Just a few days ago, our Theatre Director, Mark Everett, passed the milestone of having spent 40 years in the theatre business. We couldn’t let an occasion like that pass without a celebration…
Staff and friends of the theatre gathered in Barretts’ Bar, on the top floor of the theatre, to surprise Mark, with a celebratory cake of course being provided.
Despite claiming to be ‘lost for words’ when he saw us all, Mark managed to find his voice in time to make a brief speech, looking back on his time in working in the theatre industry, right from his first job as a House Manager at the Bolton Octagon (which involved wearing a dinner jacket to work throughout the long, hot summer of 1976) via his time working for the Arts Council (“I enjoyed giving away their money”) to his tenure here at The Marlowe Theatre which began in 1994. In the time that he has worked here, our theatre has been transformed into one of this country’s most successful regional theatres, now attracting the likes of the National Theatre, Glyndebourne Opera and the RSC.
The other speech of the afternoon came from Paul Hendy, who produces our highly successful pantomimes. He gave details of some of the careers Mark has helped launch over the years. These range from Anthony Mingella (director of The English Patient and Truly, Madly, Deeply) to actors like Sean Bean, Iain Glen and Alex Kingston. Mark also ran a comedy club which he hired the then-unknown Frank Skinner to compere. He also supported Kenneth Branagh when he started his Renaissance Theatre Company, based at Birmingham Rep, where Mark was working at the time.
The habits that Mark learnt in that first job as a House Manger have stayed with him throughout his career. You can still see him ‘walking the floor’ at our theatre, talking to staff and checking that all is well.
Mark certainly shows no signs of tiring of what he calls, “this mad but wonderful” industry – !