AustLit logo
Peter Fitzpatrick Peter Fitzpatrick i(A17165 works by) (a.k.a. Peter Henry Fitzpatrick)
Born: Established: 1944 East Melbourne, East Melbourne - Richmond area, Melbourne, Victoria, ;
Gender: Male
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.


Fitzpatrick has been Senior Lecturer in English at Monash University. His main research interest is Australian drama.

Most Referenced Works

Awards for Works

y separately published work icon The Two Frank Thrings Clayton : Monash University Publishing , 2012 Z1881015 2012 single work biography

'They shared a name, of course, and their physical resemblance was startling. And both Frank Thrings were huge figures in the landscape of twentieth-century Australian theatre and film.

'But in many ways they could hardly have been more different. Frank Thring the father (1882-1936) began his career as a sideshow conjuror, and he wheeled, dealed and occasionally married his way into becoming the legendary "F.T." — impresario, speculator and owner of Efftee Films, Australia's first 'talkies' studio. He built for himself an image of grand patriarchal respectability, a sizeable fortune, and all the makings of a dynasty.

'Frank Thring the son (1926-1994) squandered the fortune and derailed the dynasty in the course of creating his own persona — a unique presence that could make most stages and foyers seem small. He won fame playing tyrants in togas in Hollywood blockbusters, then, suddenly, came home to Melbourne to play perhaps his finest role — that of Frank Thring, actor and personality extraordinaire. Central to this role was that Frank the son was unapologetically and outrageously gay.

'Peter Fitzpatrick's compelling dual biography tells the story of two remarkable characters. It's a kind of detective story, following the lives of two men who did all they could to cover their tracks, and to conceal "the self": Frank the father used secrecy and sleight-of-hand as strategies for self-protection; Frank the son masked a thoroughly reclusive personality with flamboyant self-parody. It's also the tale of a lost relationship — and of the power a father may have had, even over a son who hardly knew him.' (From the publisher's website.)

2013 winner National Biography Award
Life’s a Circus 2009 single work musical theatre 'Vivien and David are two Australian performers and friends working overseas on a circus tour, who both realise they may have finally found someone worth risking everything for, when the youthful Alex joins their company... ' Source: (Sighted 1/03/2010).
2009 shortlisted Victorian Green Room Awards New Australian Musical
y separately published work icon Pioneer Players : The Lives of Louis and Hilda Esson Oakleigh : Cambridge University Press , 1995 Z88415 1995 single work biography

'This is a dual biography, the story of Louis Esson, the distinguished playwright who has been called 'the father of Australian drama', and his wife Hilda, who did her own pioneering in the theatre and in public health. The plays they wrote and performed reflected the drama of their lives: creative angst, intellectual conflict, untimely death, romantic entanglement, jealousy and despair. Yet Peter Fitzpatrick's book is more than a good read.

'As a critical appraisal of Louis Esson's plays and an exploration of the relationships the Essons had with well-known literary and theatrical figures in Australia and overseas, the book is an exploration of a developing Australian culture and identity. It is also about the dynamics of a marriage between two brilliant people, reflecting not only the patterns of gender relationships in their own time, but universal passions and strategies.' (Publication summary)

1996 highly commended Ernest Scott Prize
Last amended 8 Apr 2004 15:41:48
Other mentions of "" in AustLit: