INTERVIEW WITH PETER HUNTLEY

Peter is general manager of The Wind in the Willows for Jamie Hendry Productions and was associate producer of Bend It Like Beckham The Musical (Phoenix), awarded Best Musical at the 2015 Critics' Circle Theatre Awards. He has produced Lizzie Siddal (Arcola); In the Next Room or the Vibrator Play (St. James); As You Like It, Farragut North, Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me, Floyd Collins, The Belle’s Stratagem (Southwark Playhouse), The Kissing-Dance (Jermyn Street) and Austentatious (Landor). He has general managed many other productions.

Peter has worked for Sonia Friedman Productions, Shakespeare’s Globe and The Really Useful Theatre Company. He has created events for institutions including The Society of London Theatre, Delfont Mackintosh Ltd and The Victoria & Albert Museum.

Peter Huntley completed a Stage One London Commercial Apprenticeship with Sonia Friedman Productions and the Really Useful Group in 2009, after which he was awarded a Stage One Bursary to set up Peter Huntley Productions.

At the moment you are…
General Manager of The Wind in the Willows for Jamie Hendry Productions. We're currently playing at Mayflower Theatre Southampton and have just announced a move to the London Palladium in June 2016.

What does Stage One mean to you?
Stage One helped me change the course of my career. My BA is in dramaturgy and I did my MA at Mountview on the musical theatre course. I'd worked a bit as an actor, but had been working at the V&A and Theatre Museum for a number of years. They gave me my first gigs producing events and that gave me a taste for producing. I didn't know how to jump into producing full time and getting the Stage One Apprenticeship opened that door for me. The subsequent award of a bursary helped me setup my company when I went independent and, probably most importantly, Stage One introduced me to a network of friends and colleagues who I work with every day of my professional life.

Last show you saw and loved?
I recently saw a fabulous production of Adding Machine at the Finborough. I have tried, unsuccessfully, to mount several productions of the show and I was thrilled to see it done so beautifully. On a larger scale I thought Groundhog Day was brilliant. A life-affirming piece of drama.

What do you think, is the best thing about the Theatre Industry?
We get to work on something we love and feel passionately about. I've had enough soul destroying temp jobs to know that that makes us very lucky.

What's the best piece of advice you've been given?
It actually isn't a piece of advice that I was given. I worked on the Theatre & Performance Galleries at the V&A and whilst I was doing some research I found a great quote from the impressario Charles B. Cochran. He said "always put a show on for yourself, and do it the best that you can. Only then, maybe, will an audience come to see it."

To find out more about the Stage One London Commercial Apprenticeship and Bursary click on the links.