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Vivienne Cleven


Nationality:    Australian
email:    Click here to contact     Website:    n/a

Literary Agent:    n/a

Vivienne Cleven was born in 1968 in Surat, Queensland. Her nation is Kamilaroi. She left school at the age of thirteen to work with her father as a jillaroo: building fences, mustering cattle, and working at various jobs on stations throughout Queensland and New South Wales. Her novel, Bitin' Back, won the David Unaipon award in 2000, and was shortlisted for the Courier-Mail Book of the Year award and the South Australian Premier's award for Fiction in 2002. Her latest novel Sister's Eye, published in 2002, was chosen in the 2003 People's Choice shortlist of One Book One Brisbane. Bitin' Back is her first play.

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below is a list of Vivienne Cleven's plays - click on a Play Title for more information

Bitin' Back

Bitin' Back

according to acclaimed Director Wesley Enoch (Black Medea, The Sapphires), Bitin' Back is a slapstick cartoon comedy with a sense of celebration in its portrayal of instantly recognisable characters - the kind of people we, as Australians, know and grew up with. When the Blackout's star player, Nevil Dooley, wakes one morning to don a frock and 'eyeshada', his mother's idle days at the Bingo Hall are gone forever. Mystified and clueless, single parent Mavis takes to bush-cunning and fast footwork to unravel the mystery behind this sudden change of face. Outrageously funny, neither bare-knuckle sessions in the back yard or even a police siege can slow the countdown on this human time bomb. While Nevil thinks he's a dead white sheila, Tim Tam munching Mavis is in a desperate race to save him from the savage consequences of discovery in a town where a career in footy is a young black man's only escape.

adapted from the novel Bitin' Back, published by University of Queensland Press 2001, the play is A zany And uproarious black farce set in A small Queensland country town.

1st Produced:
Kooemba Jdarra Indigenous Theatre Company, Brisbane    2005


1st Published:


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If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies



Male:  5            Female:  3            Other:  -

Further Reference:

Top of Page Top of Page comprises a comprehensive online searchable database for plays written in English since the production of Look back In Anger in 1956. Each play listing contains a playwright biography, synopsis, cast size, creative and production team for the premiere production, date and location of the first performance and much not only defines the World's theatrical repertoire for the first time but also aims to revitalise that repertoire by reintroducing many lost scripts and providing a gateway for locating and clearing rights for a very large number existing scripts. We are delighted to receive information from users where our own research has been unable to locate details on the holder of a play's contains a comprehensive listing for each new play written in English produced by professional theatre companies, venues, festivals, commercial producers and once-off-producers from 1956 to the present. It includes adaptations, translations and new versions. The database also includes those plays produced by fringe (unsubsidised) companies and by semi-professional organisations, where the work is deemed to be of particular significance to the repertoire. Thus you will get help with playwright, dramatist, plays, biography, theatres, agent, synopses, cast sizes, production, published, dates, database, research.