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MANO NERA by Adam Grossetti

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THEMES: Migration, bribery, crime

CHARACTER AGES: 20 - 40

Length
LENGTH: 20 Minutes
Target Audience
TARGET AUDIENCE: Primary Years
Cast Size
CAST SIZE: 1 - 2 Cast Members
   PLAYWRIGHT: Adam Grossetti
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SYNOPSIS In the 1930s, letters of extortion were written to the migrant Italian community in North Queensland’s cane growing districts. Mano Nera – the ‘black hand’ – was the name of the group claiming responsibility for the letters. But was Mano Nera a slick criminal organisation, or simple-minded thugs?

Either way, Mano Nera instilled fear that divided the community. Australians argued for the deportation of the Italian migrants. While the Italian community, who had bravely fled political oppression and a fast deteriorating society to make North Queensland their home, faced a choice. Would they put up with their reputation being sullied by the actions of Mano Nera’s desperate men? Or would they flight for the privileges their adopted country could offer?

Mano Nera richly evokes the tense stand-off between the British authorities and a divided Italian community desperately trying to make the most of its hard-won freedom.

PRODUCTION HISTORY Mano Nera was first presented by Queensland Theatre Company at the Bille Brown Studio in June, 2005. It was Winner of the Queensland Premier’s Drama Award in 2004-5.

ISBN 0908156901

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