John Harding is a descendant of the KuKu Yalanji tribe and the Mer people. He was co-founder of the Ilbijerri Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Theatre Co-op in Melbourne. The first play produced by the Co-op was Harding's Up The Road, which was subsequently performed at the Belvoir Street Theatre, and then toured nationally.
Harding has been an actor, and has worked in Aboriginal affairs and education. He has been writing poetry since the age of 14, and has written and directed drama for theatre, radio and television. He was assistant Director for the 1989 National Black Playwrights' Conference and Artistic Director of the 1996 Nambundah Festival. His television credits include Lift Off and Blackout, the Aboriginal sitcom The Masters and the SBS Indigenous current affairs program, ICAM. In 2006 Hardy was nominated for a DEADLY Award, Outstanding Achievement in Literature, for his book The Dirty Mile, a History of Indigenous Fitzroy (2006).
The Dirty Mile : A History of Indigenous Fitzroy2006single work drama 'Take a walk through Fitzroy's Indigenous history and experience Indigenous people's strong and continuing historical, cultural and emotional connection to this place - from its Woiwurrung beginnings right up to the here and now. WW2 Munitions Workers, Atherton Estate locals before the High-rise, our sporting heroes, the Indigenous Fitzroy residents in the pubs, organisations, churches and back lanes. These snapshots of Fitzroy's Indigenous history the continuing theme of dispossession throughout our Indigenous experience and celebrate our social, political, cultural and sporting achievements - our resolve for self determination. Ilbijerri offers up to audience this unique Indigenous experience as an alternative to the Commonwealth games. ' Source: http://www.ilbijerri.org.au/ (Sighted 19/03/2006)
A celebration of life, love and family set in the remote Aboriginal community of Flat Creek, where life is pretty uncomplicated—until a Canberra bureaucrat returns home. (Source: Australian plays website)