The Death of a Wombat is an award-winning radio documentary by writer and producer George Ivan Smith and composer Geroge S English.
Created for the Australian Broadcasting Commission (now Australian Broadcasting Corporation, or ABC), the documentary tells the story of a wombat's day, a bushfire, and the effect of the bushfire on the animals of the area, including the death of the titular wombat.
The radio documentary was initially broadcast in 1959, and subsequently re-recorded and released by RCA in 1961 (mono) and 1977 (stereo). It continued being rebroadcast by the ABC throughout the 1960s and 1970s. An illustrated book version, with artwork by Clifton Pugh, was published in 1972.
The 1961 recording, which accompanies this listing, features Alastair Duncan as the Narrator, supported by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra conducted by Nicolai Malko.
The 1959 broadcast won several international awards, including the coveted Italia Prize, and has been described as ‘a vivid and deeply moving word-picture which sets a standard for imaginative feature writing’.