World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Ernie Dingo

Article Id: WHEBN0003131023
Reproduction Date:

Title: Ernie Dingo  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Australian comedy, Dolphin Cove (TV series), Until the End of the World, Indigenous Australians, Australian Living Treasures
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Ernie Dingo

Ernie Dingo
Ernie Dingo presents The Great Outdoors and see Australia
Born Ernest Ashley Dingo
(1956-07-31) 31 July 1956
Bullardoo Station, Western Australia
Occupation Actor, television personality, comedian, teacher, promoter
Spouse(s) Sally Ashton-Dingo (1989–)
Children Willara, Zoe, Alyssa and Jurra

Ernie Dingo AM (born 31 July 1956) is an Indigenous Australian actor and television presenter originating from the Yamatji people of the Murchison region of Western Australia.


Born Ernest Ashley Dingo on 31 July 1956, at Bullardoo Station,[1] he was the second child of nine, including three brothers and five sisters. He grew up in Mullewa, Western Australia with his family.[2] His younger brother Murray died in a car accident in August 2007.[2][3] He went to Prospect Primary and then Geraldton High School.

He came to acting after moving to Perth and meeting Richard Walley, with whom he played basketball in a local team. Ernie went on to play state league first division for the East Perth Hawks in Western Australia.


Dingo is a distinguished actor and presenter in film and television, and promoted the Generation One "Hand Across Australia" which was a promotion for Indigenous equality.

He collaborated with Richard Walley to create a controversial "Welcome to Country" ceremony in Perth in 1976, after dancers from the Pacific islands would not perform without one.


Dingo's film career began in the early 1980s and he appeared regularly on screen through the 1990s. He appeared in Bruce Beresford's 1987 drama The Fringe Dwellers and worked on the 1988 docu-drama biopic Tudawali. He had a major supporting role in the international comedy blockbuster "Crocodile" Dundee II in 1988. He appeared as himself in the 1989 comedy Capuccino and had a major role in the 1991 Wim Wenders film Until the End of the World. In 1993 he starred in Blackfellas and he had a lead role in 1996's Dead Heart. In 1998 he starred in Somewhere in the Darkness. In 2010 he returned to the silver screen with a role in the Aboriginal musical Bran Nue Dae along with Jessica Mauboy and Geoffrey Rush.[4]

Television and other appearances

Dingo hosted the television program The Great Outdoors since 1993. He has also appeared in many Australian television series such as Blue Heelers, The Flying Doctors, Heartbreak High and Rafferty's Rules. He appeared in the TV mini-series' The Cowra Breakout (1984), A Waltz Through the Hills (1987), (for which he won an AFI Award for Best Actor in a Television Drama) and Kings in Grass Castles (1997),[5] as well as co-starring with Cate Blanchett in the Australian television drama series Heartland (Heartland is known as Burned Bridges in the United States).

Dingo narrated the Indigenous segment of the 2000 Olympic Games opening ceremony in Sydney, New South Wales.

In May 2007, Dingo appeared as one of the celebrity performers on the celebrity singing competition reality show It Takes Two. Dingo also hosted the first series of No Leave, No Life, on Channel Seven.

In February 2012 Dingo and his family were featured in episode three of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) documentary series Family Confidential.[6]

He appears in an episode of Serangoon Road, an Australian-Singaporean television drama series which premiered on 22 September 2013 on the ABC and HBO Asia. Also in 2013, Dingo is a Vietnam veteran, a retired Army drill sergeant facing his demons in episode six of the second series of Redfern Now, Dogs of War.[7] The episode was shown at the Adelaide Film Festival in October 2013.[8]

Personal life

Ernie Dingo married Sally Butler, then a sales representative for 2Day FM, in 1989.[9] Dingo discovered in 2004 that he had a daughter, named Zoe, from a brief relationship before his marriage. He also has a daughter called Alyssa Wallwork and his wife also raised another grandchild Jurra, as well as their 16-year-old adopted daughter Wilara.[9] In his appearance on Family Confidential Dingo revealed that Wilara's father was another aboriginal actor who was related to him.[6] Sally Dingo has authored two books about her husband and family, 2000's Ernie Dingo: King of the Kids and Dingo, The Story of our Mob in 1997. They live in the suburb of Warrandyte, 24 kilometres northeast of Melbourne.

Dingo is a prominent supporter of Australian rules football, and in particular the Australian Football League's West Coast Eagles & he sings their team song before every home game. He was on the selection committee for the Indigenous Team of the Century.


Ernie Dingo was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1990, in recognition of his service to the performing arts.[10]


In 2010, two women from New South Wales and Victoria claimed to have engaged in affairs with Dingo. It was subsequently reported that Ernie and Sally were living in an open marriage for the sake of their children.[11] The claim of an open marriage was found to be false and was retracted. [12]

In December 2009, Ernie made controversial comments hitting out at "hypocritical white people who lecture Aborigines about alcohol consumption".

What you should be worrying about is who is giving them access... who sells alcohol? Not black people," Dingo said.
We [Indigenous people] don't have a problem. Our problem is to say 'no' to you blokes, to white people... 'no' is not really part of our cultural background." "There are more white alcoholics than there are black people in this country, so don't come at us with restrictions and Aboriginal laws about alcohol.
It upsets me a lot. I'm passionate about the fact that people talk – journalists talk – about Aboriginal people with our drinking problem. We don't have a drinking problem at all... [The] Aboriginal drinking problem is white people selling to them." [13]

In August 2010, the WA Police Force announced they had opened an investigation into reports of child abuse by Dingo. It is alleged that Dingo slapped and verbally abused an 11-year boy at Carnarvon Primary School, and then made abusive comments singling out that particular boy while speaking at a school assembly shortly afterward. Dingo denied the claims, saying: "I deny it, but until there is an outcome I can't really talk about it."[14][15] He entered a plea of not guilty by endorsement in a letter to the court and a date of 3 February 2011 was set for trial in Carnarvon.[16] However, on 18 April 2011, following a mediation session, the assault charge was dropped and the matter formally withdrawn.[17]


  1. ^ Ernie Dingo (1956 – ). Film
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ a b Huntington, Patty and Rachel Brown. "Dingo's secret daughter'. Sydney Morning Herald. 12 September 2004.
  10. ^ It's an Honour – Member of the Order of Australia
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^


  • Dingo, Sally. Dingo, The Story of our Mob. Random House Australia, 1997. ISBN 0-09-183634-4.
  • Dingo, Sally. Ernie Dingo: King of the Kids. Random House Australia, 2000. ISBN 1-74051-710-5.

External links

Media offices
Preceded by
No Leave, No Life host
season 1
Succeeded by
James Tobin
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.