Nick Enright was a playwright, actor, director, screenwriter, lyricist, translator, adaptor, dramaturge, performer, compare and teacher. He grew up in Maitland, NSW and was educated at St Ignatius’ College, Riverview and Sydney University. He began working professionally in the theatre for J.C. Williamson at 16. After graduation from university he spent a year as general assistant at the Nimrod Street Theatre. Later he trained at the New York University School of the Arts (MFA 1977) on a grant from the Australia Council.
Nick’s body of work includes the plays ON THE WALLABY, DAYLIGHT SAVING, ST. JAMES INFIRMARY, MONGRELS, A PROPERTY OF THE CLAN, THE QUARTET FROM RIGOLETTO, BLACKROCK, GOOD WORKS, PLAYGROUNDS, CHASING THE DRAGON, SPURBOARD and A POOR STUDENT. With Justin Monjo he adapted Tim Winton’s CLOUDSTREET (Company B/Black Swan), directed by Neil Armfield, which played in all Australian capitals, London, Zurich, Dublin, Washington and New York. His last play was A MAN WITH FIVE CHILDREN (Sydney Theatre Company, 2002). For film he wrote BLACKROCK and LORENZO’S OIL with George Miller (for which they were nominated for Academy and WGA Awards for best Original Screenplay); and for television CORAL ISLAND and the miniseries of COME IN SPINNER. BLACKROCK and COME IN SPINNER were both nominated for AFI awards. With composer Terence Clarke he wrote the musicals THE VENETIAN TWINS and SUMMER RAIN. Other musical collaborations include MIRACLE CITY with Max Lambert, MARY BRYANT with David King, and the book for THE BOY FROM OZ. GOOD WORKS and CLOUDSTREET won Melbourne Green Room Awards for Best Play. DAYLIGHT SAVING, A PROPERTY OF THE CLAN, the screenplay of BLACKROCK and CLOUDSTREET all won Writers’ Guild Gold AWGIE awards.
Nick received the 1998 Sidney Myer Performing Arts Award and he was posthumously awarded the 2003 Variety Humanitarian Lifetime Achievement Award and the Special Award at the 2003 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards. Nick died in March that year at the age of 52. Nick’s plays continue to be performed nationally and internationally.