The One Day of the Year

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The One Day of the Year
Written by Alan Seymour
Date premiered 20 July 1960
Place premiered Adelaide
Original language English

The One Day of the Year is an Australian play by Alan Seymour originally written in 1958 about Anzac Day.


A university student, Hughie Cook, helps his girlfriend Jan write an article criticising Anzac Day, which upsets his ex-serviceman father, Alf.


Alf Cook, Dot Cook, Hughie Cook, Wacka Dawson Jan Castle


The play was inspired by an article in the University of Sydney newspaper Honi Soit criticising Anzac Day and Seymour's own observations of how ex-servicemen behaved on that day. The character of Alf was based on Seymour's brother in law.[1]


The play was rejected by the Adelaide Festival of Arts Board of Governors in 1960, but made its debut on 20 July 1960 as an amateur production by the Adelaide Theatre Group. The first professional season was in April 1961 at the Palace Theatre in Sydney. It proved controversial and Seymour received death threats[2] however it was popular and there have been productions ever since.


Film rights were bought by Lou Edelmen Productions in 1970 but no film resulted.[3]


  1. ^ Jinman, Richard (2003-04-02). "Stirring struggle endures to this Day". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2012-01-10. 
  2. ^ "'The one day of the year' Broadcast: 25/4/2003 Reporter: Sharon O'Neill ''Stateline''". Retrieved 2012-04-16. 
  3. ^ Loren, Mastroianni to Star Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 04 Mar 1970: g12.