INTERVIEW WITH TARA FINNEY

Tara Finney qualified as a corporate solicitor before starting her theatrical career as Resident Assistant Producer at Theatre503. After Theatre503, Tara was Producer at Iris Theatre, leading on two open-air summer seasons in the grounds of St Paul’s Church, Covent Garden. Tara also spent 18 months as Associate Producer at Company of Angels where she line produced Theatre Cafe Festival, their flagship, pan-European theatre festival, and general managed World Factory, a co-production with METIS, New Wolsey Theatre and the Young Vic.

Her independent work through Tara Finney Productions includes Land of Our Fathers (Found111, National Tour, Trafalgar Studios, Theatre503) and the critically-acclaimed debut play by Phoebe Eclair-Powell, WINK. She also produced The Natives by Cat Jones and Matthew Booth for the Old Vic New Voices Festival and will be co-producing Phoebe's second play and Jay Taylor's (Nell Gwynn, Wolf Hall, Accolade) debut play in late 2016.

Tara was awarded a Stage One Bursary to allow her to develop her career as an independent producer and to support the transfer of Land of Our Fathers to Trafalgar Studios in September 2014.

She recently set up a new company Tiny Fires Ltd with director Paul Robinson and their debut production, My Mother Said I Never Should by Charlotte Keatley, and starring Maureen Lipman and Katie Brayben, opens at the St James Theatre in April.

At the moment you are…
In rehearsals for My Mother Said I Never Should, which opens on 13th April at St James Theatre. I’m working with a phenomenal team on this production – from cast member Maureen Lipman to Olivier Award winning video designer Timothy Bird and my long-term collaborator, director Paul Robinson.

What does Stage One mean to you?
A hell of a lot! I’ve been lucky enough to have been a bursary recipient, and so financially it enabled me to give up my part-time job two years ago to focus on my independent career. But more importantly it’s about becoming part of a network – whether formally or informally, I’ve met so many brilliant producers who I can call on anytime for advice.

Last show you saw and loved?
Hangmen. I love new writing, and McDonagh’s dark humour is definitely my vibes! The story was unique, the set design was exceptional and the performances were superb. It’s the kind of show I want to be producing.

What do you think is the best thing about the Theatre Industry?
How open and helpful everyone is. I recently finished my tour of Land of Our Fathers at Found111, Emily Dobbs’ new(ish!) space on Charing Cross Road which is a fantastic space, but as a ‘found’ space is a bare bones building. The actors get very grimey in their coal dust make up and there are no showers; however I did a ring around of local West End houses and the Dominion offered us use of theirs. How lovely is that!

What's the best piece of advice you've been given?
To always trust my gut instincts. Your head and your heart can say very different things at times but I tend to find my gut is a great mediator between the two and most of the time is bang on the money!

Tara has kindly offered 50% off for Stage One Alumni on 26th April, Use code ARTIST for 50% off Band A tickets for evening performance on 26th April only, 2 tickets per person. Click HERE to book!

If you’d like to find out further details regarding our Bursary scheme click HERE.