theatre

Theatre Production

An emerging theatre producer

Biography

An accomplished arts manager and former charity executive, Darren began his career in theatre management playing an integral role in the opening of The Lowry and Waterside Arts Centre in Sale, as well as taking management roles at the Palace Theatre Manchester and Leeds Grand Theatre.

Following this, Darren became Deputy Chief Executive for the charity Manchester Pride, delivering one of the UK’s most complex urban events. He lead the organisations artistic policy, by way of content, event creation, artists and overall creative output and also developed and delivered the charities marketing/communications strategies and financial management.

During his time with the charity, he built strong links with arts partners and developed the cultural offering of Pride Fringe and Superbia; programming artistic content, commissioning new work and supporting grassroots arts projects.

Working under Rough Sketch Productions, Darren offered consultancy and management services to festivals, events and arts projects, which saw him supporting major events, such as Kendal Calling, Parklife and the Isle of Wight Festival, alongside boutique events such as Eroica Britannia, Shout Festival and Forgotten Fields. 

Darren has staged events on moving trams, underneath Concorde and in a working laundrette. Notable credits include Producer for The Community Centre (2016) dir. John Klark, written by Nicola Gardner, Artistic direction/producer for Refract:17 at Waterside Arts Centre, Producer of Ain't it Queer: Manchester Comedy Festival (2008), award-winning Rough Sketch Comedy Club (various), Metrolink Sessions: Jam on a Tram (2014), Supersonic (2012/13) and UK production management for Margarita Pracatan’s Stranger in the Night (2012).

Darren also remains as an advisory member of Superbia; Manchester Pride’s annual programme of culture.

As Arts Centre Manager at Waterside Arts Centre, Darren leads the artistic programme and strategic vision for the venue.

Production Credits & Ongoing Creative Projects

community centre

Producer

The Community Centre! Written by Nicola Gardner, Directed by John Klark

Currently in production. The Community Centre! depicts a day in the life of a Manchester Community centre. During the day we are introduced to a series of liable, entertaining characters from diverse cultures who give us a bird's eye view of their lives and personalities. 

The production was be staged at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation, Manchester in September 2016 

rough

Associate

 

Producer

Rough: Stories of Homeless Manchester by Out from Under Theatre Company

Currently in R&D. A project understanding and developing work around those experiencing homelessness and hidden homelessness, telling their stories and those of the activists, support workers, volunteers and members of the public whom support them.

jam on a tram

Project Manager

Jam on a Tram: Metrolink Sessions

Superbia by Manchester Pride | 2014

A chartered tram, filled with live performances including Twisted Tubes - a 6-piece contemporary brass ensemble, Nicole Barber-Lane (Hollyoaks) and jazz singer, Alexander Stewart.



paul harfleet.jpg

Project Manager

BYTE: Paul Harfleet & the Pansy Project

Sackville Gardens | 2014

An art installation by artist Paul Harfleet (the Pansy Project. Using the Alan Turing memorial sculpture in Sackville Gardens as a catalyst for conversation, Harfleet reactivated this well-known memorial and encourage conversation and debate about Turing’s legacy and the mythology that surrounds the life and death of this controversial figure.


Pride

Music Programming

Big Weekend / Superbia / Supersonic

 Manchester Pride | Various

Overseeing all artistic content as part of Manchester Pride’s Big Weekend and charity events, attracting international and UK artists to perform.

margarita

Production Management (Manchester)

Margarita Pracatan - Stranger in the Night

Manchester Pride Fringe Festival | 2012

Staging the UK production of Margarita Pracatan’s one woman show following it’s premiere in New York. Managing all elements of delivery including artist contracting, travel and visa arrangements, staging, venue, marketing and ticket provision.


Programming Lead

Manchester Pride Fringe/Superbia/Supersonic 2012 - 2014

Planning and delivering the artistic contents as part of the Manchester Pride Fringe and Superbia; Manchester Pride’s annual programme of culture. Key events included Coming Out; From Script to Screen, a debate around how writers and actors address LGBT stories in TV with panel members including the late Tony Warren and cast members from Coronation Street. 

2014 saw the secret screenings of the film Pride, prior to worldwide release in the Moston Miners Community Centre.

Supersonic ran for two years as a red-carpet charity event. Artistic content included The Feeling, Ren Harvieu, Sam Bailey, Felix Hagan and the Family, Twisted Tubes and the Manchester Airport Choir.

UK Production Management

Margarita Pracatan - Stranger in the Night

Manchester Pride Fringe Festival | 2012

Staging the UK production of Margarita Pracatan’s one woman show following it’s premiere in New York. Managing all elements of delivery including artist contracting, travel and visa arrangements, staging, venue, marketing and ticket provision.

 

Producer

Ain’t it Queer

Manchester Comedy Festival | 2008

Producing a live comedy event as part of Manchester Comedy Festival. Performers included Joe Lycett and Rosie Wilby.

 


Producer

Rough Sketch Comedy Club | Various venues | 2007/2008

A sketch comedy night attracting national performers.

The comedy club scooped ‘Best Alternative Comedy Night’ in the LOL Comedy Awards.

 


Project Management

Out in the Community | Manchester Pride | 2008/2009

A community based project supporting vulnerable and isolated members of the LGBT community, working with artist Charlotte Newson to deliver a creative entry into the Manchester Pride Parade. Funded by the Big Lottery and Manchester City Council

 


Programming

Waterside Arts Centre | 2005/06

Overseeing artistic programming, from music and comedy to theatre and dance for a multi-purpose arts venue.

 


Assistant to Resident Designer

A Game of Golf / Othello

The New Victoria Theatre | 1997/98

Assisting designer Lis Evans in the delivery of scenic design for A Game of Gold and Othello. Both productions were staged in the round.

 


Assistant to Designer

Madama Butterfly

Clonter Opera | 1996

Working with designer Christopher Woods to deliver the set and props for Clonter Opera’s staging of Madama Butterfly.


Stage Assistant

Madama Butterfly

Cloner Opera | 1996

Assisting the Stage Manager in running the shows, preparing and resetting the stage.