A FORMER Wigan wordsmith who has lived in Australia for almost 30 years has but one resolution for 2012 ... to have his new play performed at the Little Theatre.
Journalist and playwright Joe Fairhurst has written 11 plays, six of which have been performed in the non-professional theatre down under.
Born in Weston Street, Wigan, a stone’s throw away from the old Central Park, Joe has just completed a play “For the Sake of Auld Lang Syne” telling the story of five life-long friends on New Year’s Eve who wait for the sixth mate from their youth club days to join them for the big night.
“It could actually be set in Wigan in the 1950s,” says Joe, now 68, who admits that he’s never been able to decide which he likes best ... journalism or the theatre. And it seems he’s had the best of both.
During his days at Wigan’s Thomas Linacre, Joe acted in various plays and sang with the local rock group The Stalkers who later changed their name to Danny Lee and the Dominoes.
Joe served as an altar boy at St Mary’s Church in Wigan, and was an enthusiastic member of St John’s Youth Club, where he acted in several pantomimes.
He began his career in journalism with a Wigan freelance agency and in the 70s began a new life in Australia on The Age newspaper, sub-editing pages and writing sports stories and features.
Several of Joe’s plays have been performed in Victoria and Queensland and in 2009 won a major theatrical award.
He said: “I have very fond memories of Wigan Little Theatre and it is one of my ambitions to have one of my plays performed there.
“The one about the mates together on New Year’s Eve would be ideal.
“I love the worlds of journalism and theatre and have been very fortunate to have been intimately involved with both.”
Joe added: “I have some marvellous memories of Wigan and the people.
“Great town and even greater people.”