Currency Press

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Currency Press Pty Ltd
Currency Press logo.jpg
The Performing Arts Publisher
Sharing Australian stories since 1971
Currency Press is Australia's oldest, independently owned performing arts publisher.

Currency Press is Australia's only specialist performing arts publisher and its oldest independent publisher still active. Their list includes plays and screenplays, professional handbooks, biographies, cultural histories, critical studies and reference works.

Currency Press was founded by Katharine Brisbane, then national theatre critic for The Australian newspaper, and her husband Philip Parsons, a lecturer in Drama at the University of New South Wales.[1] After Philip’s death in 1993, Katharine remained at the helm of the company until she retired as Publisher in December 2001 in order to devote her energies to Currency House, a non-profit association dedicated to the Australian performing arts.[2]

In 2011, Currency Press received the Dorothy Crawford Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Profession at the AWGIE Awards.[3]

Notable Titles[edit]


Away by Michael Gow (1986) - winner of the 1986 New South Wales Premier's Literary Award - Play Award

Blackrock by Nick Enright - It’s Toby Ackland’s birthday party down near the surf club — and that means grog, drugs and fun; by the morning a young girl is dead — raped and bashed with a rock

The Chapel Perilous by Dorothy Hewett - depicts the painful and sometimes farcical life of a defiant young poet, Sally Banner

Cloudstreet by Nick Enright & Justin Monjo (1999) - an adaptation of Tim Winton's classic novel, and winner of the 1999 Gold AWGIE Award

The Club by David Williamson - a play set behind the scenes of a football club; a head-on tackle of brawn versus bureaucracy

Così by Louis Nowra - winner of the 1992 New South Wales Premier’s Literary Award - Play Award

Dead Heart by Nick Parsons - winner of the 1994 Australian Human Rights Award, the 1993 NSW State Premier's Literary Award - Play Award and the 1993 AWGIE Award for Drama

Diving for Pearls by Katherine Thomson - winner of the 1991 Victorian Premier's Award - Louis Esson Prize for Drama

Don's Party by David Williamson - Williamson's brilliant satire examines a society on the threshold of emerging from a generation of comfortable, conservative political and social values

Ham Funeral, The by Patrick White - an early expressionist drama which explores the spiritual forces that propel us forward

Holding the Man by Tommy Murphy (2007) - an adaptation of Timothy Conigrave's bestselling memoir

Hotel Sorrento by Hannie Rayson (1990) - winner of the 1990 AWGIE Award - Stage Award, 1990 NSW Premier’s Literary Award for Drama and the 1990 Green Room Award for Best Play

Macquarie by Alex Buzo - traces the decline of Governor Lachlan Macquarie’s authority in the infant colony of New South Wales; it was the first play published by Currency Press

No Sugar by Jack Davis - winner of the 1992 Kate Challis RAKA Award for Drama and the 1987 WA Premier's Book Awards - Special Award

Norm and Ahmed by Alex Buzo creates an image of race prejudice as a profoundly irrational force in the behaviour of ordinary Australians

The Removalists by David Williamson - winner of the 1972 AWGIE Award - Best Stage Play and Best Script, as well as the Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Playwright

Season at Sarsaparilla, The by Patrick White - neighbours are held by their environment, waiting with determination, but little expectation, for the inevitable cycle of birth, copulation and death

Speaking in Tongues by Andrew Bovell (1996) - winner of the 1997 AWGIE Award - Stage Award; this is the play upon which Lantana was based

Stolen by Jane Harrison - this tender and moving story brought the tragic history of the Stolen Generations to the Australian stage; winner of the 2002 Kate Challis RAKA Award

Summer of the Seventeenth Doll by Ray Lawler (1955) - a defining moment in Australian theatre history, and a beacon in the Australian dramatic canon

The Time is Not Yet Ripe by Louis Esson - a political comedy from 1912 in which the forces of socialism, feminism and conservatism fight out an election and an engagement to marry


Blue Murder by Ian David - a powerful and frightening story about police corruption and Sydney’s underworld

Chopper by Andrew Dominik - goes inside the mind of Mark Brandon ‘Chopper’ Read, one of Australia’s most notorious criminals

Muriel's Wedding by P. J. Hogan - Muriel, an unhappy young woman in dismal surroundings, sets out to overcome obstacles such as her family, her joblessness, and her obsession with 70s glam rockers ABBA

Rabbit Proof Fence by Christine Olsen - three Aboriginal girls are forcibly removed from their outback families in 1931 to be trained as domestic servants as part of official government policy

Strictly Ballroom by Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce - an exuberant story about the struggle for love and creativity in a world limited by greed and regulation


  1. ^ "Katharine Brisbane". AustLit. Retrieved 2013-06-21. 
  2. ^ Sharon, Verghis (2011-11-19). "Katharine Brisbane retains her great currency in theatre". The Australian. Retrieved 2013-06-21. 
  3. ^ "44th Annual AWGIE Awards - Winners List". AWG website. The Australian Writers Guild. Retrieved 2013-06-13. 

External links[edit]