Guide to the Papers of Adrian Rawlins [MSS 252]

Finding Aid Index Request Information


Overview | Administrative Information | Container List

Each Finding Aid can be keyword searched using the Ctrl F function on your keyboard.

Manuscript Name Papers of Adrian Rawlins
Manuscript Number MSS 252
Last Updated October 2021
Extent 16 boxes + 1 AV box + 3 photograph albums + 3 oversize folders
Location Special Collections, UNSW Canberra
Abstract Correspondence, newspaper clippings, photographs, drafts, notes.

Collection Subject Type


Scope and Content

This collection relates to Adrian Rawlins and includes correspondence, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, photographs.

Date Range of Content

1960 - 1994

Biographical Note

Adrian Rawlins  (1939- 2001) was born in Melbourne in 1939 and educated at Yarra Park State and Melbourne High Schools, and spent eighteen months at Koornong, a Utopian school in Warrandyte, Victoria.

Rawlins performed and read poems all over Australia. Rawlins was the presenter of Australia's only weekly poetry and jazz session on Australian radio in 1960-1961. He was closely associated with the famous Melbourne jazz venue 'Fat Black Pussycat', which was founded in 1963 by Ali Sugerman and functioned as a jazz club under Rawlins's ownership from 1965 until 1966, when it became a discothèque.

Rawlins met and became friends with Bob Dylan during his 1966 Australian tour, and he spoke at a Melbourne Dylan convention in 1994. His book, Dylan : Through the Looking Glass (1994), is a compilation of his thoughts and reminiscences about meeting Dylan.

During his time in Sydney in the late 60s, Rawlins became friends with Sydney poet, musician and mystic Neville Drury. In 1968-69 he was closely involved with expatriate New Zealand band The La De Das, and read excerpts of an Oscar Wilde story on their concept album, The Happy Prince (1968). He also wrote album liner notes for many artists.

 Source: Austlit online:

 Portrait at National Portrait Gallery:

Administrative Information


Access and Copying Conditions

Access: Open Access

This collection contains a variety of copyright material. Copyright is held by the creator of each item. Specific conditions for this collection are listed below. If no conditions are stipulated then the standard terms of the Copyright Act apply for published and unpublished items. Digitised material from manuscript collections is provided to clients by UNSW Canberra in good faith for private study and research only, and may not be published or re-purposed without the express and written permission of the individual legal holder of that copyright. Refer also to the UNSW copyright, disclaimer and takedown policy. 

Copying: Copying of material authored by Adrian Rawlins for private study and research is approved. 


Preferred Citation

Papers of Adrian Rawlins MSS 252, Special Collections, UNSW Canberra, Australian Defence Force Academy, Canberra, Box [Number], Folder [Number].



The collection was acquired from Adrian Rawlins between 1991 and 1995.

Subject Keywords


Poetry, performance, music.

Personal Names

Adrian Rawlins 1939 -2001


Container List

Box 1

Folder 1
Synopsis of Adrian Rawlins’ career - printed material, newspaper clippings.

Folder 2
Synopsis of Adrian Rawlins’ career - printed material, newspaper clippings.

Folder 3
Synopsis of Adrian Rawlins’ career - printed material, newspaper clippings.

Folder 4
Synopsis of Adrian Rawlins’ career - printed material, newspaper clippings.

Folder 5
Correspondence, poetry, news clippings, poetry/readings, promotional material

Folder 6
Correspondence from the 1960s and 1970s.

Folder 7
Correspondence from the 1960s and 1970s.

Folder 8
Correspondence from the 1960s and 1970s.

Box 2

Folder 9
Correspondence from the 1960s and 1970s.

Folder 10
Promotional material - theatre programs, correspondence and art work.

Folder 11
Promotional material - theatre programs and correspondence.

Folder 12
Arts promotional material .Correspondence from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.Articles.

Folder 13
Photograph: Rehearsing Poetry, Dance and Music presentation for 1st Festival of Sydney, December 1976. Picture by Ray Strange ‘The Australian’

Folder 14
Badges and cigarette packets.

Folder 15
Promotional material; poetry; correspondence; newspaper clippings.

Folder 16
First draft of ‘Mary Fortune’ review published in Overland.
Promotional material - programs for musicians, newspaper articles, etc.Correspondence.

Folder 17
Promotional material - programs for musicians, newspaper articles, etc.Correspondence.

Box 3

Folder 18
Art promotional material - advertisements, programs, pamphlets ; poetry by Joyce Lee; correspondence from the 1970s.

Folder 19
Theatre programs, newsletters, promotional material

Folder 20
Newspaper clippings concerning the Arts and Entertainment; arts promotional material; letter from T Koch

Folder 21
Scrapbook containing newspaper clippings - Joan Baez tour of Australia, 1974, and Alirio Diaz tour of Australia.

Folder 22
Arts promotional material - advertisements and programs for plays and poetry readings

Folder 23
Arts promotional material - advertisements and programs for plays and poetry readings.

Folder 24
Correspondence from the 1970s and 1980s; arts promotional material.

Folder 25
Draft of play ‘The Last Artist’ by George Gittoes; promotional material: arts, jazz, Indian music.

Folder 26
Copy of Howl by Allen Ginsberg signed by the author

Box 4

Folder 27
Arts promotional material - theatre programs, exhibition openings, performance advertisements;‘Stranzine’ 1981.

Folder 28
Rare magazines : Pulp  and 4, 1978; Harmony : Handbook for the New Age by Starbrook the wizard, Number 2; ‘Stranzine’, early 1982, part 2.

‘A Short History of Film in Australia’, essay, by Adrian Rawlins, 1963.

Transcript sound track of ‘Marvellous Melbourne’s Flying tram Show’, 1987 to 1990 - an audio visual production for Multi Media Pty. Ltd.

Correspondence with Meegan Pannu of Wesley College, Melbourne.

Folder 29
Arts promotional material - theatre and exhibitions programs, program for the opening of the Hoyts Entertainment Centre in Sydney.

Folder 30
Adrian Rawlins’ Commonwealth Bank passbook; arts promotional material, press clippings, cards.

Folder 31
Address book with newspaper clippings and personal and business cards.

Folder 32
Box containing jewellery, beads and trinkets

Folder 33
Correspondence from the 1960s and 1970s.

Folder 34
Correspondence; newspaper clippings; arts promotion.

Box 5

Folder 35
Miscellaneous material - pamphlets, correspondence, arts promotional material

Folder 36
Miscellaneous material - newspaper clippings, pamphlets, arts promotional  material.

‘Ostoja Scores a Smash Hit’ - biographical material by Adrian Rawlins.

Folder 37

Miscellaneous material - pamphlets, arts promotional material.

‘La Mama’ - a 21st Birthday Celebratory Season theatre program.

Draft of BHP Award submission

Folder 38
Miscellaneous - arts publicity material, correspondence and ‘Mr Poetry’ material

Folder 39
Poetry; correspondence 1980s; arts promotional material: program for ‘ .... a Recital of Music by Olivier Messiaen, French composer’, plus biographical material.

Folder 40
'Mr Poetry’ material. Typewritten poetry, Theatre and music programs.

Neighbours TV show schedule/call sheets, timetables etc.

Folder 41
Typed draft of ‘This is 1967’ by Lourel Tarling.

Box 6

Folder 42
Scrapbook with newspaper clippings  ‘Entrepreneurial Bits and Pieces’, 1976.

Folder 43
Scrapbook with newspaper clippings.

Folder 44
Birth certificates; references; correspondence.

Newspaper clippings.

Arts programs and promotional material.

 Folder 45
Photocopies of ‘German Expressionist poems’

Arts promotional material.


The Youth Performing Arts Council feedback forms.

Folder 46
Correspondence from the 1980s.

Arts promotional material.

Folder 47
Signed draft of ‘Freaking Out’ by Griff, 6 March, 1990

Folder 48
Correspondence 1980s - personal and with NSW Department of Education concerning ‘Poems Come Alive’.

Newspaper clippings.


Arts promotional material.


Box 7

Folder 49
Arts programs and promotional material.

Draft of review of ‘The Fortunes of Mary Fortune’ by Mary Fortune - review by Adrian Rawlins.

Timetable of ‘Words Come Alive’ performances.

Folder 50


Commonwealth Bank pass book.

Folder 51
Correspondence - 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

Folder 52
Correspondence - 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

Folder 53
Correspondence - 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

Folder 54

Folder 55

Folder 56
Correspondence - 1960s and 1970s

Box 8

Folder 57
Correspondence  1960s and 1970s

Folder 58
Correspondence -1960s and 1970s

Folder 59
Correspondence -1960s, 1970s and 1980s. Newspaper clippings

Folder 60
Album of photographs: Australian cities and landmarks

Folder 61
Correspondence; newspaper clippings; memorabilia

Folder 62
Arts promotional material

Folder 63
Newspaper clippings

Folder 64

Box 9

Folder 65
Correspondence. Leaflets. Publicity mainly to do with Meher Baba Association

Folder 66
Correspondence. ‘Words Come Alive’ secondary program. Paco Pena’s Australian tour promotional material

Folder 67
Miscellaneous promotional material. Newspaper clippings

Folder 68
Miscellaneous memoirs. Promotional material.

Folder 69
Correspondence. Miscellaneous promotional material from the 1970s.

Folder 70
Copy of Rolling Stone magazine, no. 338, 19 March, 1971

Folder 71
Miscellaneous correspondence and photocopies

Box 10

Folder 72
Copy of Ragtimes magazine, no. 16, March, 1979.

Folder 73
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Folder 74
Two copies of RAM magazine - no. 81, 7 April, 1978 and no. 83, 5 May, 1978

Folder 75
Copy of RAM magazine, 14 July, 1978.

Folder 76
Miscellaneous correspondence and promotional material

Folder 77
Miscellaneous correspondence and promotional material

Folder 78
Miscellaneous correspondence and promotional material

Box 11

Folder 79
‘Arts Alive’ - original poetry and typescripts.

Folder 80
Untitled script; poetry sent to Adrian Rawlins by Marjorie Mary Hurs

Folder 81
Scrapbook containing clippings and memorabilia

Folder 82
Correspondence; arts promotional material

Folder 83
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Folder 84
Draft of ‘Take Me to the April Rain and Wendy’ by Kevin Hindle; correspondence; arts promotional material.

Folder 85
Newspaper clippings

Folder 86
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings; drafts of poems

Box 12

Folder 87
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings.

Folder 88
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Folder 89
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Folder 90
Copy of published work Poems : New and Old  by Edith Sitwell, 1942; correspondence; newspaper clippings;

Folder 91
Correspondence; newspaper clippings

Folder 92
Copies of published works:

Alleycat by Jenny Hunter Brown, published by the author, 1987; The Moon’s Hook by Heather Cam, South Head Press, 1990; Melbourne on My Mind, the ABC, 1977; and Melting into the Foreground by

Roger McGough, Penguin Books, 1986.

Folder 93
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Box 13

Folder 94
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Folder 95
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Folder 96
Correspondence; arts promotional material; newspaper clippings

Folder 97
Art promotional material

Copies of published works:

The Story of Admiral Sneeze by Doug MacLeod, Champion Press, 1977; Burning Illusion by David Stewart, New Humanity Books, 1988; More Stuff and Non-sense by Michael Dugan and Roland Harvey, Collins, 1980; Paradox by Rudi and Lorraine Krausmann, Southwood Press, 1981 and Borrow the Spring, poetry by Amy Cumpston.

Folder 98
Newspaper clippings

Folder 99
Newspaper clippings

Folder 100

Letters, memos, faxes, notes and other communications, arranged into:

  1. May 1973 – October 1988;

  2. June 1990 – December 1991;

  3. January-December 1992;

  4. January – December 1993.

Folder 101

Letters, memos, faxes, notes and other communications, arranged into:

  1. February-December 1994;

  2. February-April 1995;

  3. Library, Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA), 30 May 1991 – 6 September 1994;

  4. Letter to famous French mime artist, Marcel Marceau, April 1994;

  5. Invoices, receipts, November 1984 – October 1994;

  6. Undated: (i) typed, handwritten letters, notes, memos, etc.; (ii) untyped brief messages, jottings, etc.


Box 14

Folder 102
Correspondence: Invitations, ‘thank you’ cards, Christmas cards, post cards.

Folder 103
Newspaper articles

Articles/features about Adrian Rawlins, 1990-1993, especially Film News (Nov. 1990) regarding meeting with actress Shirley MacLaine;

Articles/features with Adrian Rawlins’ annotations, notes, reviews on shows he attended;

Frank Thring newspaper article with tribute attachments (1995);

Eartha Kitt in Australia (1988, 1992) and articles on ‘Odetta’ (1989);

Robert Treborlang articles (1989);

John Perceval articles (1988);

Arts and education-related features and poster headlines on budget cuts, and GST in Victoria, early to late 1990s, including an On Dit piece from April 1971.

Folder 104
Documents and Notes

Bob Dylan material: (i) Anthony O’Grady, ‘Tales from the Archives: The Man Who Got Zapped By Dylan’, RAM (March, 1978); (ii) Reuters interview: ‘A Talk with Bob Dylan’ (14 October 1993); (iii) Adrian Rawlins, Dylan Through the Looking Glass [first draft with corrections] (1994); (iv) Adrian Rawlins, Dylan Through the Looking Glass (1994); (v) Rhythms, no. 23 (February 1994); (vi) 2nd Australian Bob Dylan Convention: Preliminary Announcement (1994?).

Television work: (i) Victoria Madden-Custo, Law of the Land: Episode Thirty-Five (Formerly 22). Pandora’s Box. Release Script (1994); (ii) Memo for Scene 21 (21 June 1994); (iii) Law of the Land: Location Contact List, Episodes 22 and 26 (23 June 1994); Advance Schedule: “Law of the Land”, Episodes 22 and 26 (23 June 1994); (iv) Chris Clarke Productions, ‘Shooting Schedule’ (undated); ‘Script for 30 second commercial A.R. “jolly” Wiseman (12 November 1991); “Sons and Daughters” Script Distribution List, Episode Nos. 765 and 766 (1985).

Folder 105
Documents and Notes

Typed prose and poetry manuscripts, including drafts, by or for Adrian Rawlins: (i) ‘Heaven Tonight’ (1992); (ii) ‘The Ancient One’ (undated); (iii) ‘Let’s Honour every Dancer’ (undated); (iv) ‘Criena Rohan Comes Home to her Own’ (undated); (v) John Shaw Neilson: Poetry, autobiography and correspondence [review] (undated); (vi) ‘A Dream Dancing – Eartha Kitt in the Nineteen Nineties’ (1991); (vii) ‘J.S. Ostoja-Kotkowski: Explorer in light’, (1982); (viii) ‘Poetry and Jazz? The How and Why’ (undated); (ix) ‘Monstalvat 1992: A Hugh Success for Fathers & Sons’ (1992); (x) ‘Some Time for Reading’ (undated) (xi) ‘Writer’s Register’; ‘This Morning the Pelican for Blossom Dearie’ (1989), ‘This Miracle of Light’ (June 1994); (xii) ‘Donlevy’s Restaurant Radio 30 seconds’; (xiii) Get Your ass into C.I.T.Y. (early 1980s?); (xiv) ‘Some Time for Reading’ [undated, proof for “Tirra Lirra” article]; (xv) Proofs “Dylan Through the Looking Glass” from Shane Yuill (1966, 1981).

Folder 106
Documents and Notes

Adrian Rawlins’ handwritten notes, commentaries and drafts for summaries, reviews of shows, books, anthologies, short biographies of performers, artists, etc.; a mix of dated/undated and titled/untitled work 

Folder 107
Documents and Notes

Adrian Rawlins’ handwritten drafts and ideas for poems, singing telegrams, birthday songs; mostly undated and a mix of titled/untitled work.


Box 15

Folder 108
Documents and Notes

Adrian Rawlins’ handwritten jottings, notes, reminders, phone numbers, etc. and occasional brief commentaries on shows attended; virtually all undated.

Folder 109
Documents and Notes

Other writers’ literary papers/drafts, etc.: (i) Anne Sunter, ‘Ballarat Fine Art Gallery – 100 Years’ (undated); (ii) Judith Blackall, ‘Self, Memory & Desire – New Romanticism in Italian Painting (September 1987); (iii) ‘Heaven Tonight: Production Information’ (undated), and Leigh Paatsch, ‘Heaven Tonight’ (undated); (iv) ‘Leigh Kibby, ‘The Story of the Wise Wind’ (undated); (v) Stan Marks, ‘Actresses’ Dreams Lead to New Theatre Group’ (21 August 1991); (vi) Kristin Henry, ‘Going Public with Poetry: A List of Dos and Don’ts for Publishing’ (undated); (vii) Jordan Thomas, ‘Autobiography’ (8 February 1988), (viii) ‘A Matter of Omens, Enemas and Singing Bananas (undated); (ix) Nigel Roberts (ed.), free poetry [fragile] (Sydney, 1969?); (x) ‘A Celebration of the Life of Frank Hardy’ (4 February 1994); (xi) Robert Grosche, ‘Submission for Poetry Australia, Southern Highlands Arts Festival March-April [1993]’ (1992); (xii) [Robert Groche?], ‘Voices from a City Life’ (1992).

Folder 110
Documents and Notes

Posters, promotional brochures, advertisements, pamphlets, etc. for many shows, festivals, presentations and events (e.g. Shakespearean sonnets), etc. that Adrian Rawlins directly participated in; with subdivisions made for Mietta’s, National Gallery of Victoria, Montsalvat, and The Limerick.

Folder 111
Documents and Notes

Inscribed booklets given to Adrian Rawlins: (i) SHASU (Inc.), User Pays: Poetry by Kerry Scuffins and Lauren Williams (1991); Deidre Schey, Vistas: A Selection of Poems (1993); Deidre Schey, Vistas II: A Selection of Poems (1994); Grant Alexander McCracken, The Sham Cabaret Poems (1993);

Art Gallery brochures autographed for Adrian Rawlins: Brian Dunlop (1992); Dean Bowen (1993); Robert Hollingworth (1995);

Other booklets: Lindsay Clements, Afflatus (Melbourne, 1988); Suzanne Brown et al. (eds.), Verandah: volume seven (Deakin University, Toorak, 1992).

Box 16

Folder 112
Adrian Rawlins’ collected posters, promotional pictures, advertisements, brochures, etc. for various movies, movie festivals, plays, performances, artists, shows, poetry readings, etc.

Box 17 (AV)

Audio cassette tapes

Photographs (AV)

Photo Albums 1-3

Studio photographs of Adrian Rawlins, Maggie Jacques Promotions, Melbourne;

Unidentified, undated ‘big band/jazz band’ performance;

Adrian Rawlins during a ‘Mr. Poetry’ school performance, Rainbow Primary School (1988);

Unidentified school visit by Adrian Rawlins (1980s?);

Andrew Lang (1993), Adrian Rawlins poetry reading, photograph of unidentified painting (?);

Unidentified, undated photographs of family members (?);

Various badges, security passes, IDs issued to Adrian Rawlins.



Folders 1-3

Posters: Several large posters announcing concerts, shows, festivals, performances, etc. from 1980s and 1990s – “Sign of the Times” and others including ‘Immortelles’ and 1994 Shakespeare Festival.