Richard Davey

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Richard Davey
Richard Innes Davey.JPG
Richard Innes Davey - in mid scene of "The Ship That Never Was"
Richard Innes Davey

(1938-11-04)4 November 1938
Died13 March 2013(2013-03-13) (aged 74)
OccupationActor, Playwright
Years active1958–2013

Richard Innes Davey (4 November 1938 – 13 March 2013) was an Australian actor, director and writer. He was the founder of the Round Earth Company and advocate for the understanding of the Macquarie Harbour Penal Station on Sarah Island on the West Coast of Tasmania.

Earlier he had been artistic director of The Hole in the Wall Theatre in Perth, Western Australia from 1969 -1971.[1][2]


Over ten years of the Round Earth Theatre Company at Strahan, and work on Sarah Island as a guide, Davey's work has had significance in helping tourists understand the penal station and its context, where previously there had been scattered and not very accessible research. The Ship that Never Was, written by Davey, is Australia's longest-running play, with over 5,000 performances and continuing to be performed nightly at Strahan; it is about the Frederick escape, the successful escape of 10 convicts from Sarah Island to Chile.[3]

His book The Sarah Island Conspiracies: Being an account of twelve voyages to Macquarie Harbour and Sarah Island, which was short listed for a major prize in Hobart in 2005, complements the work of Richard Flanagan's Gould's Book of Fish. They both use the painting by William Buelow Gould of the Weedy sea dragon on the covers of their books.

Davey's long lasting interest in Shakespeare's King Lear[4] saw production in November 2007 of an adaptation The Madness of King Lear [5] in Hobart, Tasmania.

Davey died on 13 March 2013 after a long battle with illness.[6][7]

See also[edit]

Audio recordings[edit]

  • Davey, Richard (2009), Richard Davey interviewed by Rob Willis in the Rob Willis folklore collection, retrieved 17 April 2013



  • Davey, Richard (1984), Don't park your swan on the grass, Salamanca Theatre Company, retrieved 17 April 2013
  • Davey, Richard; Pigot, Neil; Davey, Anita (1993), A bright and crimson flower, Crimson Flower Project, retrieved 17 April 2013
  • Davey, Richard, (2002) The Sarah Island conspiracies : being an account of twelve voyages made by one G.K. to Macquarie Harbour on the western coast of Van Diemens Land 1822-1833 Strahan, Tas. : Round Earth Co., ISBN 0-9750051-0-3 (Reproduction of a memoir dated 1896 authored by an anonymous clerk G.K. )


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 22 July 2012. Retrieved 16 April 2013.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ ABC Radio National, Artworks, ABC Radio, 11 November 2007. Accessed 6 October 2008
  4. ^ 1967 and 1981 -
  5. ^ Australian Stage Online - The Madness of King Lear
  6. ^ The Mercury Retrieved 13 March 2013. Missing or empty |title= (help)[dead link]
  7. ^ "Obituaries | the West Announcements".
  8. ^ Davey, Richard; Fitzpatrick, Phil (2003), The ship that never was : the last great escape from Sarah Island, Macquarie Harbour : liberty or death!, Round Earth Co, retrieved 17 April 2013
  9. ^ Davey, Richard (1980), Hallelujah Lady Jane, retrieved 17 April 2013
  10. ^ Davey, Richard, 1938-2013, (organizer.); Theatre Royal (Hobart, Tas.) (host institution); Zootango Theatre Company (Tas.) (issuing body) (1986), Scapegoats : Zootango presents Scapegoats, [Tasmania] Zootango, retrieved 30 August 2018CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  11. ^ Davey, Richard; Carroll, Jeff, (composer,) (1986), The catfish that cried : an opera for children, Morley, Western Australia Published by Children's Activities Time Society (Inc), retrieved 30 August 2018CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  12. ^ Davey, Richard; Round Earth Company (1995), A bright and crimson flower, The Round Earth Company, retrieved 30 August 2018

Further reading[edit]