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Professor Julian Meyrick

Book manuscript: Immigrant artists in Melbourne theatre in the interwar years: the case of Dolia and Rosa Ribush

Julian's project aims to research the character, activities and cultural influence of theatre artists who immigrated to Melbourne following WWI and in the ensuing two decades.

The combination of world war in Europe, revolution in Russia and increased international travel across the globe led to a number of overseas artists migrating to Australia, bringing with them important new ideas and energies. Two such were Dolia and Rosa Ribush, who formed the Dolia Ribush Players and produced plays by Gorky and Chekhov.

Dolia Ribush derived his directing principles from Constantin Stanislavsky's, but built on his own experience. His most remarkable achievement, which will form a core part of this research project, was the first production of Douglas Stewart's Ned Kelly in 1944.

Julian Meyrick was Professor of Creative Arts at Flinders University until July 2019, Artistic Counsel for the State Theatre Company of South Australia, and a member of the Currency House editorial committee and the Council for Humanities and Social Sciences board. An experienced archive historian, he was awarded his PhD in 2000, an account of Sydney's Nimrod Theatre, which was published by Currency Press in 2002.

Over the last 25 years, Julian has continued his research into the history, place and influence of Australian theatre, particularly its relationship to public policy.