March 27, 2017


Dan Bain, who also holds the position of The Court Jester’s Artistic Director and whose work has been seen on stage at The Court previously, has accepted the coveted role.

The Court’s Artistic Director, Ross Gumbley, is thrilled with the choice: “Dan Bain presented himself as the outstanding candidate. We have seen through the work that Dan has produced in the past that he has an accent on both excellence and innovation. We look forward to the work that he will bring to Court audiences as the new associate director.”

The associate director programme was developed at The Court eight years ago when it became clear there was a gap in the New Zealand theatre industry for the people who are going to run New Zealand theatres in the future. There is a desire that The Court’s associate director will carry on and be a leader in the performing arts in New Zealand.

Bain trained at Circo-Arts, The New Zealand Circus School, majoring in clown, comedy and character with a minor in juggling and tumbling. He went on to tour international festivals for five years as a street performer with a juggling and contortion show and was a company member of The Court Jesters, before trying his hand at directing children’s theatre.

Bain is set to direct the new children’s show Cinderella in Space which opens April 19th, Titus Andronicus on The Court’s mainstage and The Forge’s A Christmas Carol in the new 2017/2018 Meridian Energy season. He will also perform in Hamlet: The Video Game (The Stage Show).

Previous work at The Court as a director includes Cops and Robbers, A Christmas Carol (where he was also the script adaptor), and most recently, Jack and the Beanstalk. Bain has been a playwright for children’s shows, Why are my Parents so Boring?; A Paintbox of Clowns; Cat vs. Dog; and, on The Forge stage, Stag Weekend.

Outside of The Court Theatre, Bain has directed Play with Pictures (Independent); The Big Sad Wolf (NZ Playhouse); Velcro City (Radical Productions); RAPunzel (NZ Playhouse); The Importance of Being Earnest (NZ Playhouse); the Invisibles (St Margaret’s College); A Streetcar Named Desire (Canterbury Repertory); Two Girls One Shop (MDMA). In 2013, his script for Is Love Enough? won the award for Best National Script in the 48-hour film competition.

Gumbley is excited about the experience and point of difference Bain will bring to the stage, “Dan’s appetite and the variety of work which Christchurch audiences will be familiar with was one of the things that excited us about him. The work that he’s done with children’s theatre was revolutionary for The Court and we look forward to working with his point of view, his outlook and bringing that fresh energy to the work that we do.”

Bain is looking forward to determining his vision for the associate directorship and is eager to get started. “It’s such an honour and a privilege to move into a role that has had such illustrious forbearers. For me, it is both flattering and terrifying to be thought the next person with that potential to live up to the legacy they have established, both within their time in the Associate role and in their continuing work nationally. I’m excited to see what I can change and make happen within the structure of The Court Theatre for the theatre, Christchurch, and the wider industry.”   

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