Discovering Black Diggers

World War I, and Gallipoli in particular, are iconic events in the formation of Australian national identity. Yet the contribution of Indigenous servicemen is often under recognised.

This adaption of ‘Black Diggers’ is the story of the Aboriginal men who stood up to enlist, despite being shunned and downtrodden in their own country. Playwright Tom Wright, developed the play from research into the lives and deaths of Indigenous soldiers from conversations with veterans, historians and academics.

Discovering Black Diggers is a kaleidoscope of missing voices, an epic tale of triumph and disaster. It speaks of the struggle of Indigenous men faced with trying to enlist in the war, of rare moments of racial equality on the battlefield and of our post war disregard for Indigenous servicemen.

With links to The Arts, English and History curriculum this show allows students to witness history through lived experience.


Duration 60 minutes +10 minute Q&A
Maximum 250 students per session
Performance space 4m x 4m
Access to a power outlet required

Curriculum Links

KLA’S: The Arts, English, Humanities and Social Science

General Capabilities: Critical and Creative Thinking, Personal and Social Capabilities, Ethical Understanding and Intercultural Understanding

Conventions and Styles: Episodic structure, play within a play, multiple role

Themes/Concepts: Indigenous culture, WWI, racism, colonialisation


  • $8 per student +GST
  • A minimum charge of $800 +GST per performance (equivalent to 100 students)

All of our performances are the same price for all regions. We are a not-for-profit organisation passionate about providing quality Arts experiences to all Queensland students, so if your school has less than 100 students, please consider combining with another school or contact the Youth Touring team to discuss your options.

Full Terms and Conditions

Add a Workshop

A facilitated workshop where themes, characters and narrative are explored and recontextualized.

Cost $350
Maximum 30 students
60 minutes duration

GRADE 7-12

Presented by: Youth Touring and Eagles Nest Theatre Company

Written By: Tom Wright
Adapted by: James Adler & Cathrin Blickling



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