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Janis Balodis Janis Balodis i(A32665 works by) (a.k.a. Janis Maris Balodis)
Born: Established: 1950 Tully, Tully area, Cardwell - Tully - Innisfail area, Ingham - Cairns area, Queensland, ;
Gender: Male
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Janis Balodis was born in Australia of Latvian parents. He grew up in the 50s and 60s in Tully and was interested in the theatre from a very young age, first acting then becoming interested in directing. He trained at Townsville Teachers College (1968-1970), worked as a Primary School Teacher in 1971-72 and in 1974 was employed as Assistant Stage Manager of the Queensland Theatre Company. He trained as an actor and continued as a director at the E15 Acting School, London, from 1976-1979. Writing evolved out of his interest in both activities.

He became a freelance writer in 1979 and a writer/director from 1994. The Ghosts Trilogy (1997) was produced by three state theatre companies within a short space of time. Balodis has also written plays for radio and television. These include the screenplay Backyard, the television play A Step in the Right Direction (1981), scripts for the television series Menotti (One Way Conversation) 1980 and 1981), MPSIB, Go Health and the stage play My Father's Father (1996). He has also written opera libretti - The Mercenary, Chiaroscuro.

Balodis has directed (MTC) God's Best Country, The Road to Mecca, Moon for the Misbegotten, Mad Forest, Morning Sacrifice, The Girl Who Saw Everything, A Month of Sundays, Wednesday to Come, Shadowlands, The Elocution of Benjamin Franklin, (NORPA) Too Young for Ghosts. He also served as : Script Assessor at the Australian Film Commission (1985), Associate Director and Literary Manager, Melbourne Theatre Co (1987-1993), Member of Literature Board of Australia Council (1989-1992), Chair of the Australian National Playwrights' Centre (1989-1991), Dramaturg Queensland Theatre Co (1995), Artistic Associate Queensland Theatre Co (1996), Member of theTheatre Fund of Australia Council (1998- ).

In 2003, as a lecturer in Scriptwriting, Balodis received a grant of almost $16,000 from the Australia Council's Theatre Board to develop a project titled The Flood, engaging writers, musicians, artists and scientists from Southern Cross University, New South Wales.

Most Referenced Works


  • Author writes in these languages: ENGLISH

Personal Awards

Awards for Works

Electric Lenin 2006 single work musical theatre

'Janis Balodis was commissioned by NORPA to write the text [for Electric Lenin] after Lyndon Terracini first heard the intriguing true story about the life of a North Coast farmer, who despite his isolation on a rural property in 1960's Australia, developed relationships across the globe via his ham radio.

'Balodis's libretto uses elements of this life - themes such as rural isolation and communication - as a springboard into a remarkable story about memory and loss...

''Electric Lenin' paints a picture of a man so consumed by ideas and passions beyond his immediate realm he fails to realise the power of the relationships he has immediately around him. Using elements of opera, movement, video projections, live and recorded sound.'

Source: NORPA website,
Sighted: 02/08/2007

2007 winner AWGIE Awards Music Theatre
y separately published work icon Too Young for Ghosts Sydney : Currency Press Stage Company , 1985 Z27945 1985 single work drama (taught in 2 units)
1986 winner Victorian Premier's Literary Awards Prize for Drama
Last amended 25 Feb 2015 16:19:03
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