Jean Tong is a Melbourne-based writer, dramaturg and director. She is a 2020 Philip Parson’s Fellow and member of the Belvoir Writers’ Lab as well as the Development Assistant at Goalpost Pictures.
Her plays include: HUNGRY GHOSTS which premiered at Melbourne Theatre Company in 2018; KILL ALL ADULTS which premiered at Victorian College of the Arts in 2018; TERRORISM; MACDEATH: A CODA; and the musical ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT (which she also directed) which premiered in 2017 and was remounted at Malthouse Theatre for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and Brisbane Festival in 2018. ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT was nominated for both Best Writing and Best Ensemble at the 2019 Green Room Awards.
She is currently under commission by Griffin Theatre Company to develop her new work FLAT EARTHERS: THE MUSICAL (with Lou Wall and James Gales) which is also supported by Arts Centre Melbourne. The work had a staged reading directed by Jean for at Arts Centre Melbourne for Midsumma 2020. Jean’s new musical was shortlisted for ATYP’s Rebel Wilson Scholarship, and was accepted into Homegrown Australia’s Grassroots Initiative.
Jean was selected for Film Vic’s Plot Twist programme and by Screen Australia to be part of their Developing the Developer initiative, which aims to increase the pool of experts in the field of story development. In 2020, Jean is being supported by Film Vic to undertake a 10-week industry placement on NEW GOLD MOUNTAIN with SBS and Goalpost Pictures.
In 2019, Jean directed the premiere of new Australian work OH NO! SATAN STOLE MY PINEAL GLAND! by Kirby Medway for Melbourne Fringe Festival; and was dramaturge for LOTUS by Chi Nguyen. In the same year, Jean was commissioned by the Queen Victoria Women’s Centre to write the podcast, APODCALYPSE which was released in early 2020.
Melbourne Theatre Company granted Jean the Robert Macdonald Professional Development Award. She has also received the Murray Sutherland Award and the University of Melbourne Global Scholar’s Award.
Jean has published in Peril Magazine and Meanjin (Spike) and presented at the Emerging Writers' Festival. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Melbourne with a double major in English and Theatre Studies, and Criminology. During her second year, she studied at King’s College London. She has completed a Masters in Writing for Performance at the Victorian College of the Arts. .