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Wesley Enoch Wesley Enoch i(A31691 works by)
Born: Established: 1969 Stradbroke Island, Moreton Bay, Brisbane - South East, Brisbane, Queensland, ;
Gender: Male
Heritage: Aboriginal ; Aboriginal Nunukul / Noonuccal ; Aboriginal Nguri
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Wesley Enoch is the eldest son of Doug and Lyn Enoch from Stradbroke Island and is the current [2021] Indigenous Chair in the Creative Industries at QUT. Wesley is a renowned director and writer for the stage. His written body of work includes I Am Eora, The 7 Stages of Grieving (co-written with Deborah Mailman), Little White Dress, A Life of Grace and Piety, Black Medea, The Sunshine Club, Grace and The Story of the Miracle at Cookie's Table, for which he won the 2005 Patrick White Playwright's Award and was short listed for both the New South Wales and Victorian Premier's Literary Award.

After working across several aspects of theatre in Queensland, Wesley became Artistic Director for Kooemba Jdarra Indigenous Performing Arts in 1994, where he directed his own work including Little White Dress (Queensland Performing Arts Centre/Out of the Box Festival), A Life of Grace and Piety (Just Us Theatre Ensemble) and The 7 Stages of Grieving, which toured the London International Festival of Theatre, Melbourne, Tasmania, Adelaide and went on to be re- mounted in Sydney Opera House. Other directing credits include Murri Love (Metro Theatre Brisbane), Changing Time (Salamanca Theatre Company), The Dreamers (Brisbane Festival) and Up the Ladder (Melbourne Workers Theatre, Festival of the Dreaming).

In 1998, Wesley became Associate Artist for Queensland Theatre Company, for which he directed Radiance, Black-ed Up, The Sunshine Club and Fountains Beyond. His other credits in that time include The 7 Stages of Grieving, which toured the Swiss International Theatre Festival, Stolen (Playbox Theatre) and Romeo and Juliet (Bell Shakespeare). He became the Resident Director at Sydney Theatre Company in 2000 and directed Black Medea, The Sunshine Club, Black-ed Up, The Cherry Pickers (2002 UK Tour), and Stolen (Adelaide, Sydney, Tasmania and UK Tour) and remounted The 7 Stages of Grieving.

Following his term at Sydney Theatre Company, Wesley became Artistic Director of the Ilbijerri Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Theatre Co-operative in 2003 for which he directed Shrunken Iris and Rainbow's End, and remained on the Board until 2007. In this time, Wesley directed some of the most successful and prolific works in Australian theatre. For Company B, Wesley directed several productions including The Dreamers, Conversations with the Dead, Black Medea (with Malthouse Theatre), and The Sapphires, with Melbourne Theatre Company and which went on to win the Helpmann Award for Best Production and Best New Australian Work and was remounted at the 2005 Sydney Festival.

Wesley also directed the Helpmann Award nominated outdoor event Eora Crossing (Legs on the Wall/Museum of Sydney/Sydney Festival) and Riverland for Windmill Performing Arts, staged at the Adelaide, Perth and Brisbane International Festivals. Wesley's play The Story of the Miracles at Cookie's Table was directed by Marion Potts and staged at Hothouse Theatre Melbourne and the Griffin Theatre in Sydney to critical acclaim.

As Associate Artist at Company B from 2006-2008, Wesley directed Capricornia, Paul, Parramatta Girls (nominated for 2007 Helpmann Award for Best Direction and Best Production), and Yibiyung (with Malthouse Theatre). His more recent work includes Nargun and the Stars (Performing Lines), The Man From Mukinupin (Company B/Melbourne Theatre Company), One Night, the Moon (Malthouse Theatre) and a revival of The Sapphires (Company B/Black Swan Theatre Company).

Over several years, Wesley worked with Tom Wright in the development of a play about Indigenous soldiers of World War I. Black Diggers premiered at the Sydney Opera House in 2014, with an all-Indigenous male cast and was a triumphantly received.

He directed the Indigenous section of the 2006 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony, is a member of the Hothouse Theatre Artistic Directorate, a Trustee of Sydney Opera House, a member for the New South Wales Government Arts Advisory Council and numerous other Committees. In 2008 Enoch was the Artistic Director for the Australian delegation to the Festival of Pacific Arts (FOPA) and in June 2010 he was appointed as the Artistic Director for the Queensland Theatre Company. In 2015, he left Queensland Theatre Company to become director of the Sydney Festival; his last festival was in 2021.

In 2018, he gave the Nick Enright Address at the National Playwrighting Festival.

In March 2021, he was appointed Indigenous Chair in the Creative Industries (a new role) at QUT.

Most Referenced Works


  • Documentation of 'Dreamhome: Reaching Black', a performance project by Contact Youth Theatre's Murri Workshop, 1990, is available at QUT library.
  • Interview with Enoch by Jackie Huggins and Peter Read held at NLA ORAL TRC 3431.

Awards for Works

y separately published work icon Trollop 2011 Brisbane : Playlab , 2013 6485116 2011 single work drama

'Clara lives with her partner, Erik, in a clean, modern home untouched by a flood that has ravaged many parts of their town. Recently unemployed and growing fat and slovenly, her days are spent in front of the television, awash with images of disasters and destruction and programs that flaunt versions of the woman Clara could be if she tried. She is overwhelmed to the point of apathy; immobilised. Feeling so numb, she toys with Erik'’s emotions, and sends him on excursions to fetch her obscure items for a book he has obligated her to make, as if to extract some new reaction from him. She is, perhaps, trying to sabotage their comfort.

'One stormy night, Eugenie comes to the door as a Jehovah'’s Witness to speak to them about the End Days. When she is invited in to take shelter, the evening soon drips with danger, violence, and ugly truths. And Clara’'s hideous troll skin will be revealed and burst open. ' (Publisher's blurb)

2012-2013 winner Queensland Premier's Drama Award
y separately published work icon The Story of the Miracles at Cookie's Table Cookie's Table 2006 Strawberry Hills : Currency Press , 2007 Z1238010 2006 single work drama

'In the 1870s a girl is born under a tree - her birth tree - chosen to give her strength and wisdom. When the tree is cut down she follows it into the white man's world, working as a cook for the big house on the island. Her tree has become a kitchen table, one she will pass down through successive generations as a legacy - a way of carving out her family stories. Now, generations later, a young man and his mother fight for ownership of the table.'

Source: back cover, Currency Press imprint (2007)

2005 winner Patrick White Playwrights' Award
2008 nominated Deadly Sounds Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Music, Sport, Entertainment and Community Awards Excellence in Film & Theatrical Score Nominated for Enoch's script.
2008 shortlisted Victorian Premier's Literary Awards Prize for Drama
2008 shortlisted New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards Nick Enright Prize for Playwriting
Black Medea 2000 single work drama
— Appears in: Contemporary Indigenous Plays 2007; (p. [55]-81)

'In this riveting reworking of Euripides' play, Medea is a young Indigenous woman who after leaving her family and desert country behind, finds herself in a loveless partnership with the drunken and violent Jason. When Medea attempts to flee home with their young son, Jason makes her promise that she will never take the child from the house. In a breathtaking act of revenge and sacrifice, Medea kills her young child... the child that was the father's heart.' (Source: AusStage website)

2005 nominated Victorian Green Room Awards Best Adaptation Best Adaptation
2005 nominated Sydney Theatre Awards Best Mainstage Production Nominated for the 2005 Company B production.
Last amended 8 Dec 2021 07:41:52
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