Barry Lowe

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Barry Lowe is a playwright & fiction writer who also dabbles in film scripts and film actress biographies.

Born 16 May, 1947, making him a Taurus, he has been a vegetarian for 35 years and has been with his partner, Walter, for an equal number of years (as of 2007).  

Over the years he has dabbled in a number of professions from trainee primary school teacher, mail sorter, copywriter for ad agencies, psychiatric nurse, packer in a quilt warehouse, call centre team leader, sex shop salesperson, and the editor of the Australian gay magazine, Campaign, for more years than he cares to remember (1981-87). 

He has written entertainment interviews and reviews for The Sydney Star as well as its successor, Sydney Star Observer, Nation, Sunday Review, Campaign (under Wayne Harrison’s editorship)The Entertainer, Digger, Lumiere, Theatre Australia, Cinema Papers, The National Times, The Newcastle Morning Herald, Sydney Star Observer, OutRage, One More Time, Performing Arts News, Classified, Now 9pm, Harbour City Times, and Classified. He also wrote the storylines for John Dobie’s erotic comic strip, Bimbo Beach. His Lowe-Life column in The Sydney Star was notorious and one of the first regular columns in an Australian gay publication. 

 

He was stage manager and occasional actor with the Grosvenor Players, a theatre presenting plays for children at the Kings Cross Wayside Chapel Theatre before moving to Willoughby with John Williams and Gail Newholme who formed the JG Theatre for Children. Under their guidance and encouragement he took up writing plays and performing. But he realized acting was not his strong point and after a year of regimentation at Sydney’s National Institute for Dramatic Art where he was influenced by the enthusiasm and encouragement of Max Iffland the lecturer in Theatre History, and Arthur Dicks, then head of Design, he also realized that stage management was not to be his future either.  

 

He began to write plays in earnest and his second play, Writer’s Cramp, was to be the last production of Sydney’s Gay Theatre Company. It wasn’t Barry’s play that sent them to the wall but internecine rivalries. His next produced play was Ego Positioning presented at the Beresford Hotel. He was invited to take over the Bijou Room at the Balmain Town Hall Hotel and the space was converted into a small theatre area where new productions were mounted every six weeks during the end of 1982 and through most of 1983. 

  

As his plays, gay and non-gay, were being picked up by other companies he rested his company to concentrate on journalism, fiction writing and plays. During the next 20 years his plays were presented throughout Australia and eventually the Australia and eventually the U.S. and London. His short play, Relative Merits, starring David Campbell ran, on and off, for three years, including a schools tour; his one-man play, Homme Fatale, based on the life and death of gay porn icon, Joey Stefano, was one of the most successful productions at Belvoir Downstairs, directed by Peter McLean who also directed a version at the Sanford Meisner Theatre in New York. Other productions quickly followed in Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Brisbane, Rome, Chicago, San Francisco, Detroit and Florida. Other acclaimed productions include The Death of Peter Pan,  Seeing Things, Rehearsing the Shower Scene from ‘Psycho’, and The Extraordinary Annual General Meeting of the Size-Queen Club .

 

He co-wrote the screenplay, with Andrew Creagh, for Richard Turner’s Violet’s Visit , and wrote the books for a number of musicals with songwriter, Sean Peter, including Scam!, Dutch Courage and She’s No Angel: A Mae West Vaudeville

 

He turned his hand to film biography, the first of his published works being Atomic Blonde: The Films of Mamie Van Doren, released through McFarland Publishing in the U.S. in 2007. 

 

Currently, he writes the Adult column for the free Sydney glossy magazine, SX, [available online at http://gaynewsnetwork.com.au/], as well as writing gay romance and gay erotica for various eBook publishers and print anthologies.

 

His plays Relative Merits (King St. Theatre, Sydney) and The Death of Peter Pan (Chapel-off-Chapel, Melbourne) were revived to acclaim in 2013.

 

He lives in Mascot with his partner, Wally, and their irascible baby dinosaur, Tofu.

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