Ailsa has worked for over 35 years as a writer, director, actor, teacher, speaker and broadcaster.
As a writer, she works across many mediums. Highlights include being named co-winner of the Patrick White Playwright’s Award for her script Small Mercies in 2001; publishing her first book Sinning Across Spain in 2012; and writing and performing an episode of ABC radio's Poetica programme, based on that book. Ailsa also co-adapted Bell Shakespeare’s acclaimed version of The Duchess of Malfi in 2012. Her most recent book, co-authored with Tony Doherty, is THE ATTACHMENT: Letters From A Most Unlikely Friendship.
Ailsa has judged the NSW and Victorian Premier's Literary Awards seven times. She is an accomplished moderator of conversations and panels, and writes journalism and opinion pieces for newspapers and magazines. She also writes and performs her Wordwalks – monologues celebrating poetry, walking and landscape, which she performs in all weathers, as you’d expect!
Her short reflective essays have appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian, Slow Magazine and Eureka Street among many other publications.
For more about Ailsa Piper visit www.ailsapiper.com.
How would you describe your creative process?
'I’m driven by restlessness and curiosity. I work to learn - to discover and uncover, to get below surfaces, to locate connections. I write a lot and discard a lot - the theatre taught me to be comfortable with trying and failing. Make an offer. Consider it. Toss it. Sometimes even keep it! Everything is grist - the books I read, the walks I take, the people I meet. Most of all - the mistakes I make. I work with opposites - stillness and movement, silence and talk, waiting and pushing, collaboration and solitude, slow and fast, resting and...restlessness.'