People

Banner Theatre is currently managed by Dave Rogers, as Artistic Director, and Stuart Brown, as Administrator. Stuart, a freelancer who has been involved with Banner since the early 1990s, also directs Banner’s new productions.

 

They are supported by a Tour Organiser and a volunteer-team comprising Helena France (Bookkeeper/Admin Support) and Brian Coupland (Assistant Tour Organiser).

 

Don Bouzek, the Artistic Director of Ground Zero Productions in Canada and a long-time creative collaborator, continues to support Banner as artist, planner and mentor.

 

Other long-standing associates include Jacqueline Contré and Ian Gasse, who assist in various fundraising and developmental activities.

 

Mukhtar Dar, Helena France, Tim Hollins, Raj Pal, Maureen Russell and Fiona Tait (Chairperson) serve on Banner’s Management Committee as company directors.

 

Profiles

 

1.Direction and Administration

 

Dave Rogers

Artistic Director / Musician / Performer / Script and Song Writer

Dave is a founder member of the company and works as a singer, performer, scriptwriter, songwriter and researcher. Over the last 40 years he has created, or has helped to create, well over 50 Banner productions and 400 songs. Dave is also a long-time political activist and campaigner.

 

Stuart Brown

Administrator / Project Coordinator / Writer / Productions’ Artistic Director

Based in Nottingham, Stuart has worked with Banner off and on in various capacities since the early 1990s, and has over 30 years’ experience of working in the arts and theatre sector as an administrator, fundraiser, director and writer. Stuart is a former Producer with Nottingham Playhouse and has also worked extensively with refugees and asylum across the East Midlands.

 

Don Bouzek

Video Director / Popular Education Workshop Facilitator

Don is Artistic Director of Ground Zero Productions, a community theatre company in Edmonton, Canada. Don has collaborated with Banner for 15 years, since the two companies featured in Workers’ Playtime (2001), a study of theatre and the labour movement by Alan Filewod and David Watt (ISBN 0868196312). Don produces videos for broadcast and educational use; he has won awards from the Canadian Association of Labour Media.

 

Helena France

Administrator / Bookkeeper (Volunteer)

A former primary school teacher of 30 years, Helena has volunteered to work with Banner for the past two years, in support of the company’s aims and values.

 

Brian Coupland

Assistant Tour Organiser (Volunteer)

Brian performed briefly with Banner in the mid 1970s (Viva Chile show and anti-cuts street theatre). He has worked for 36 years in the NHS as a hospital laboratory scientist. Brian was a shop steward and branch chair for UNITE, and has also been a joint union convenor. Now retired, Brian is back with Banner, finding gig venues and helping with general clerical work.

 

Jacqueline Contré

Fundraiser / Development Consultant / Project and Education Facilitator

Jacqueline has been working off and on for Banner since the 1980s. She is an experienced arts manager and management consultant, having worked with New Perspectives in the East Midlands and Play-Train, Sampad, ArtSites and The Drum in Birmingham. Jacqueline plans to complete a PhD at the University of Warwick on Banner Theatre and the effectiveness of its cultural interventions.

 

Ian Gasse: Development Coordinator / Fundraiser

Ian has worked in local government, in arts administration and management and as a researcher and editor in the arts sector for more than 40 years. He had spells with Yorkshire Arts (1989-91) and North West Arts Board (1994-2000) prior to the re-organisation of the national arts funding system. He was tour organiser and administrator for Red Ladder Theatre in the early 1980s and has worked as fundraiser, tour organiser and development coordinator for Banner since 2001. He has a Master’s Degree in Cultural Studies (1998).

 

 

The company is very fortunate to enjoy widespread support amongst community activists and trade unionists locally and nationally, and have an extensive network of former company members to call on for practical support. Without this broader ‘Banner Family’, the company would not have survived for as long as we have done.

 

 

2.Touring Company

 

Rosie Cartlidge

Rosie joined the company in May 2016 as a singer for Banner’s Chicago: The Great Teachers’ Strike and draws her influences from Rhythm & Blues, Hip Hop, Soul and Jazz. In 2013 she completed a degree course in ‘Media Music Industries’ during which time she undertook research into ‘musical discourses’. She also performs in a number of local bands.

 

Vince Pryce

Musician / Performer / Schools Workshop Facilitator

Vince is an African-Caribbean singer and multi-instrumentalist (bass, guitars, keyboards, drums), songwriter and musical arranger and has been working with the company since 2005. Plays and tours with a number of local professional bands.

 

Dean Whiskens

Sound, Visual and Technical Director

Dean has been working with Banner on and off since the early 1990s. He was Deputy Head of Sound for the Birmingham Rep for 8 years before becoming a freelance community artist and founder member of Infamous Community Arts CIC.