y A Stretch of the Imagination single work   drama   - One act
Issue Details: First known date: 1971 1971
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Adaptations

y A Stretch of the Imagination United Kingdom (UK) : British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) , 1976 7953168 1976 single work radio play

'A lonely old man far outback in the desert, reliving his past by a stretch of the imagination.'

Source: Radio Times, 8 January 1976, p.27.

Notes

  • Other formats: Also braille, sound recording.

Production Details

    • First produced by the Australian Performing Group at the Pram Factory, Melbourne, 8 March 1972.
    • Produced on BBC radio, England, 1975.
    • Was also produced in Shanghai, 1987, in Mandarin - the first Australian play produced in China.
    • Produced by HIT Productions in 2009 as a 14-week tour to 26 capital city, metropolitan, regional and remote theatre venues Australia wide.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

      1971 .
      Extent: 54 leavesp.
      Description: Typescript (photocopy).
      (Manuscript) assertion

      Holdings

      Held at: University of Queensland University of Queensland Library Fryer Library
      Local Id: H0818
    • Woollahra, Sydney Eastern Harbourside, Sydney Eastern Suburbs, Sydney, New South Wales,: Currency Press , 1973 .
      Alternative title: A Stretch of the Imagination : A Play
      Extent: vii, 53p.p.
      ISBN: 0858930269, 0858930277 (pbk.)
      Series: Currency Playtexts : Series 2 series - publisher
  • Appears in:
    y Plays of the 70s [Volume 1] Katharine Brisbane (editor), Sydney : Currency Press , 1998 Z34704 1998 anthology drama (taught in 11 units) Sydney : Currency Press , 1998 pg. 163-214
  • Appears in:
    y Selected Plays Jack Hibberd , Strawberry Hills : Currency Press , 2000 Z795032 2000 selected work drama (taught in 3 units)

    Three landmark plays from the renaissance of Australian playwriting: 'White with Wire Wheels' was the first play to examine the insecurity inherent in the male culture of women and cars; 'Dimboola', a Rabelaisian account of a country wedding; Monk O'Neill, of 'A Stretch of the Imagination' has become an archetype of Australian character.

    Strawberry Hills : Currency Press , 2000
    pg. 107-148

Works about this Work

Director Sets a High Bar Fiona Gruber , 2010 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 24 August 2010 2010; (p. 16)
Adam Spreadbury-Maher, an artistic director from Canberra, is currently (2010), leading a revival of London's pub theatre scene.
How Australian is It? Alison Croggon , 2010 single work essay
— Appears in: Overland , Spring no. 200 2010; (p. 55-62)
One-Act Role Hits Darker Shades of Blue Ron Cerabona , 2009 single work column
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 6 May 2009; (p. 8)
Recluse Loosens the Lingua, Frankly Jason Blake , 2009 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 15 May 2009; (p. 12)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Stage is the First Love for Wood Victoria Bruce , 2009 single work review
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 13 - 14 June 2009; (p. 13)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Wet, in the Mindscape of the Dry: Water Tanks as Nature/Culture Signifiers C A Cranston , 2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Words on Water: Literary and Cultural Representations 2008; (p. 23-38)
The author investigates the impact of Australian literature and European attitudes on water conservation in Australia.
Mis-Recognised Knowledges : National Identity and the Unreliable Narrator in Jack Hibberd's A Stretch of the Imagination and Josephine Wilson's The Geography of Haunted Places Glen McGillivray , 2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australasian Drama Studies , April no. 52 2008; (p. 69-84)
'In this article I analyse how both works [A Stretch of the Imagination and The Geography of Haunted Places], despite their different historical contexts, enact a critique of Australian identity against a background of significant political change within the country. Although seemingly quite different, these works adopt similar dramaturgical strategies and I argue that their significance lies in their genealogical connection.' (69)
y Die Spielregeln Des Miteinanders : Jack Hibberds Dramatisches Werk Rules for Playing Together : Jack Hibberd's Dramatic Work Juliane Lochner , Berne : Peter Lang , 2001 Z864692 2001 single work criticism Discusses Hibberd's dramatic oeuvre, his themes, preoccupations, dramatic techniques and sources, and the development of his theatre career.
Introduction Paul McGillick , 2000 single work criticism
— Appears in: Selected Plays 2000; (p. vii-xviii)
Maddened Monk's Life Fiona Scott-Norman , 1997 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 10 March 1997; (p. C5)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Monodrama- A Justification Gyula Tanko , 1996 single work criticism
— Appears in: Breaking Ground : Eight Student Essays on Australian Literature : A Collection of Papers in Australian Studies 1996; (p. 65-74)
Hibberd and His A Stretch of the Imagination 黄源深 , 1995 single work criticism
— Appears in: A Unique Literature : A Critical View of Australian Literary Works 1995; (p. 129-136)
Max Gillies Ramona Koval (interviewer), 1992 single work interview
— Appears in: One to One 1992; (p. 118-124)
Post-Colonialism and Australian Drama Joanne Tompkins , 1992 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian-Canadian Studies , vol. 10 no. 2 1992; (p. 127-130)
A Rich Imaginative World Peter Clack , 1991 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 2 May 1991; (p. 17)
Bran Nue Hit Brian Hoad , 1991 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 15 January vol. 112 no. 5753 1991; (p. 99)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama ; Bran Nue Dae : A Musical Journey Jimmy Chi 1990 single work musical theatre
Gillies as Monk: Recommended Ann Nugent , 1991 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 9 May 1991; (p. 2)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Max is Monk Alison Croggon , 1990 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 16 October vol. 112 no. 5741 1990; (p. 123-124)

— Review of Fire Graham Henderson 1990 single work drama ; A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama ; Meat Graham Henderson 1990 single work drama
Gillies Lends Maturity to Monk Role Peter Weiniger , 1990 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 1 October 1990; (p. 14)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
The MTC Homes In Mike Daly , 1990 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 13 July 1990; (p. 14)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama ; Capricornia : From the Novel by Xavier Herbert Louis Nowra 1988 single work drama ; On Top of the World Michael Gow 1986 single work drama
Recluse Loosens the Lingua, Frankly Jason Blake , 2009 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 15 May 2009; (p. 12)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Stage is the First Love for Wood Victoria Bruce , 2009 single work review
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 13 - 14 June 2009; (p. 13)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Max is Monk Alison Croggon , 1990 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 16 October vol. 112 no. 5741 1990; (p. 123-124)

— Review of Fire Graham Henderson 1990 single work drama ; A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama ; Meat Graham Henderson 1990 single work drama
Assaying the New Drama A. A. Phillips , 1973 single work review
— Appears in: Meanjin Quarterly , Winter vol. 32 no. 2 1973; (p. 189-195) Responses : Selected Writings 1979; (p. 182-189) Contemporary Australian Drama : Perspectives Since 1955 1981; (p. 217-224)

— Review of The Third Secretary : A Play Ralph Peterson 1972 single work drama ; A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama ; The Removalists David Williamson 1971 single work drama ; Four Australian Plays Barbara Stellmach 1973 selected work drama ; The Chapel Perilous, Or, The Perilous Adventures of Sally Banner Dorothy Hewett 1972 single work musical theatre ; The Lucky Streak : A Play James Searle 1966 single work drama

A. A. Phillips introduces his review of six new Australian dramas by saying: 'The quality of these plays, and others in the present burgeoning, is perhaps not the most important consideration. It matters much more that they are here and that they are satisfying audiences. Culturally in the widest sense of the word, the theatre's first importance is not as a potent vehicle of art, but as the place where a crosssection of the community has a common, and preferably a significant, experience. But so long as our theatre presented almost entirely imported material it forfeited half its power to develop our social coherence. Moreover, it fed our tendency to drowse into acceptance of a client-state mentality. It therefore matters a good deal that a sizeable slice of our common entertainment is now being presented by our own entertainers concerned with our own forms of living and igniting an eagerness of response. If their plays are also good art or penetrating social comment, so very much the better; but that is not their primary social function.' (Meanjin 32.2 (June 1973):189)

Untitled Katharine Brisbane , 1973 single work review
— Appears in: The Australian , 3 February 1973; (p. 29)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled Katharine Brisbane , 1973 single work review
— Appears in: The Australian , 8 February 1973; (p. 8)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled G.E. , 1973 single work review
— Appears in: Tribune , 13-19 February 1973; (p. 11)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled K. Kemp , 1973 single work review
— Appears in: The National Times , 26 February-3 March 1973; (p. 18)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled Paul Douglas Barron , 1974 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 18 November 1974; (p. 8)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled J. Grillo , 1974 single work review
— Appears in: Gambit , no. 25 1974; (p. 107)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
A Virtuoso Performance by Both Writer and Actor Rex Cramphorn , 1977 single work review
— Appears in: Theatre Australia , September-October vol. 2 no. 5 1977; (p. 26-27)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled G. Donkin , 1977 single work review
— Appears in: Campaign , no. 23 1977; (p. 48)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled Ken Healey , 1977 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 22 September vol. 19 no. 1977; (p. 17)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled F. Kelly , 1977 single work review
— Appears in: The Australian , 4 July 1977; (p. 8)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Satire, Harsh but Enriching H. G. Kippax , 1977 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 4 July 1977; (p. 8) A Leader of His Craft : Theatre Reviews by H. G. Kippax 2004; (p. 202-204)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled Ken Healey , 1978 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 30 March 1978;

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled B. Evans , 1985 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 20 May 1985; (p. 11)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled K. Healey , 1985 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 11 July 1985; (p. 3)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled Paul McGillick , 1985 single work review
— Appears in: The National Times , 24-30 May 1985; (p. 32)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Untitled L. Solomon , 1985 single work review
— Appears in: Campaign Australia , no. 114 1985; (p. 52)

— Review of A Stretch of the Imagination Jack Hibberd 1971 single work drama
Hibberd and His A Stretch of the Imagination 黄源深 , 1995 single work criticism
— Appears in: A Unique Literature : A Critical View of Australian Literary Works 1995; (p. 129-136)
Wet, in the Mindscape of the Dry: Water Tanks as Nature/Culture Signifiers C A Cranston , 2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Words on Water: Literary and Cultural Representations 2008; (p. 23-38)
The author investigates the impact of Australian literature and European attitudes on water conservation in Australia.
Mis-Recognised Knowledges : National Identity and the Unreliable Narrator in Jack Hibberd's A Stretch of the Imagination and Josephine Wilson's The Geography of Haunted Places Glen McGillivray , 2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australasian Drama Studies , April no. 52 2008; (p. 69-84)
'In this article I analyse how both works [A Stretch of the Imagination and The Geography of Haunted Places], despite their different historical contexts, enact a critique of Australian identity against a background of significant political change within the country. Although seemingly quite different, these works adopt similar dramaturgical strategies and I argue that their significance lies in their genealogical connection.' (69)
One-Act Role Hits Darker Shades of Blue Ron Cerabona , 2009 single work column
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 6 May 2009; (p. 8)
Director Sets a High Bar Fiona Gruber , 2010 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 24 August 2010 2010; (p. 16)
Adam Spreadbury-Maher, an artistic director from Canberra, is currently (2010), leading a revival of London's pub theatre scene.
How Australian is It? Alison Croggon , 2010 single work essay
— Appears in: Overland , Spring no. 200 2010; (p. 55-62)
Drama Terry Sturm , 1981 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Oxford History of Australian Literature 1981; (p. 175-267)
Jack Hibberd Peter Fitzpatrick , 1979 single work criticism biography
— Appears in: After 'The Doll' : Australian Drama Since 1955 1979; (p. 129-144)
Revaluing Australian Legends : Some Plays by Jack Hibberd Peter Pierce , 1978 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , May vol. 8 no. 3 1978; (p. 342-350) Contemporary Australian Drama : Perspectives Since 1955 1981; (p. 242-253)
Squibs : A Collection of Short Plays : Introduction D. J. O'Hearn , 1984 single work criticism biography
— Appears in: Squibs : A Collection of Short Plays 1984; (p. 1-9)
Mask and Cage: Stereotype in Recent Drama Margaret Williams , 1972 single work criticism
— Appears in: Meanjin Quarterly , Spring vol. 31 no. 3 1972; (p. 308-313) Contemporary Australian Drama : Perspectives Since 1955 1981; (p. 209-216)

Margaret Williams argues that 'the greatest single factor in setting Australian playwrights free to explore the dramatic possibilities of their own society has been the decline of naturalism, particularly of the well-made naturalistic play' (308). She comments on recent plays, especially by Jack Hibberd, Alex Buzo and David Williamson, suggesting that they each 'make imaginative use of the social ritual and verbal cliches of Australian society to explore insecurity and inadequacy behind their defensive facades (310)'.

Max Gillies Ramona Koval (interviewer), 1992 single work interview
— Appears in: One to One 1992; (p. 118-124)
y Jack Hibberd Paul McGillick , Amsterdam : Rodopi , 1988 Z117642 1988 selected work criticism biography interview
The One-Actor Play in Australian Drama Jeremy Ridgman , 1981 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , May vol. 10 no. 1 1981; (p. 35-47)
Monodrama- A Justification Gyula Tanko , 1996 single work criticism
— Appears in: Breaking Ground : Eight Student Essays on Australian Literature : A Collection of Papers in Australian Studies 1996; (p. 65-74)
Post-Colonialism and Australian Drama Joanne Tompkins , 1992 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian-Canadian Studies , vol. 10 no. 2 1992; (p. 127-130)
A Rich Imaginative World Peter Clack , 1991 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 2 May 1991; (p. 17)
Stretching Our Imaginations Collin O'Brien , 1975 single work criticism
— Appears in: Westerly , December no. 4 1975; (p. 24-33)
Jack Hibberd's Anti-Naturalism Paul McGillick , 1979 single work criticism
— Appears in: Quadrant , March vol. 23 no. 3 1979; (p. 42-47) Contemporary Australian Drama : Perspectives Since 1955 1981; (p. 259-271)
The Author is Hooked on China Margaret Jones , 1987 single work criticism biography
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 28 November 1987; (p. 86)
Last amended 7 May 2009 09:35:28
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