Lecturer in Directing
Mark began working as an Assistant Director at the theatre Royal Stratford East and the Royal Shakespeare Company, where he worked with Philip Hedley, Adrian Noble, Sam Mendes, Katie Mitchell and Michael Bogdanov, then moved into the position of Associate Director of the Nottingham Playhouse. His first Artistic Director position was for the Brunton Theatre where, under his leadership, the theatre won two Herald Angels a Scotsman Fringe First and the Stage Award for Best Performance at the Festival. During this time his writing credits included Moving Objects, A Madman Sings To The Moon, Confessions of A Justified Sinner and Come on Feel the Noise. From there he became the Artistic Director of the Lyceum Theatre, Scotland’s largest building based producing theatre company and steered a programme of work that celebrated excellence on the mid-scale and represented the company locally, nationally and internationally. His last two seasons were particularly successful, winning 8 Critics’ Awards Best Production for Brecht’s Caucasian Chalk Circle and Waiting for Godot. He also directed 29 productions of which 15 were World Premieres, and 23 co-productions creating work seen at the Dublin International Theatre Festival, London, Chichester, Liverpool, Nottingham, Coventry, Bath, Glasgow Citz, Dundee Rep and Perth Rep.
As a writer for the Lyceum his credits include A Madman Sings to The Moon, Wondrous Flitting, Pinocchio, an adaptation of Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg and The Dark Road written jointly with Ian Rankin.
Lecturer in Playwriting
Martin is a Paisley born actor, playwright and director who now resides in Perthshire. He trained at the RCS, graduating in 2007 from the Acting course. Previously with the National Theatre of Scotland he has performed in Dragon (co-produced with Vox Motus/Tianjin People’s Arts Theatre) and Peer Gynt (co-produced with Dundee Rep and Barbican). His other theatre credits also include work with the Citizens, Tron, Lyceum, Vox Motus, Visible Fictions, Random Accomplice, Magnetic North, Catherine Wheels, Grid Iron, Play Pie Pint, macrobert, Perth Theatre and Dundee Rep. Martin’s television credits include River City, Shetland, Still Game, Hollyoaks Later and Taggart. His debut National Theatre of Scotland commission as a playwright Ma, Pa and the Little Mouths was co-produced with the Tron Theatre in 2018. Martin’s playwrighting debut, Squash, won Best New Play in 2015 at the Critics Award for Theatre in Scotland- which was produced by Play, Pie, Pint and co-presented by the Traverse. That same year his short play Potterrow, won the inaugural Scotland Short Play Award (supported by Cumbernauld Theatre/Traverse). He has also had work produced by Traverse (The Day the Pope Emptied Croy), Grid Iron (South Bend), Random Accomplice (co-writer on News Just In) and Play, Pie, Pint (Flo; The First Dance). He has previously been on the writing team at River City and is currently the resident writer and director for the Howden Park Centre panto in Livingston. He is currently under commission to Visible Fictions to write a currently untitled production for Spring 2021.
Donna began her performing career as a singer and an actress, working throughout the Western United States, Canada and Asia for more than a decade. As well as live performance, she worked for many years as a studio singer, both for Producer’s Workshop and Larrabee Sound in Hollywood.
She returned to full time education and graduated from the University of California, Irvine with a BA and an MFA in Directing and Performing. She did a D.Phil at Oxford University, under the supervision of Terry Eagleton in 1988. She has since been awarded with a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of California.
She has been training actors in the UK for two decades and has served as the Head of Acting at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London; as founding Head of Acting & Dance at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, and as Director of Drama, Head of Musical Theatre, and Director of International Development for the Royal Scottish Conservatoire. Her specialist subjects include Naturalism, Shakespeare & heightened text, Naturalism, Voice and Singing.
Since 2007 she has worked extensively in television both as a casting director and performance coach, and her credits include: ITV’s “Superstar” (Casting Director and Performance coach, 2012) and “Popstar to Operastar” (Casting, Performance and Vocal Coach, 2011); BBC’s “The Voice” (Casting Director, 2011-2017), “The Dare” (Casting, Performance and Vocal Coach, 2011), “Over the Rainbow” (Casting Director and Performance Coach, 2010), and “I’d Do Anything” (Casting Director and Performance Coach, 2008). And is currently working on a new show for ITV. In 2005 she wrote and presented a 4 part-series for BBC Radio Scotland, called “Singing School”.
Her books include: Mastering the Shakespeare Audition (Bloomsbury, 2016) Popular Singing and Style (Methuen, March 2014), Mastering the Audition: How to Perform Under Pressure (Methuen, July 2012), and The Philosophical Actor (Intellect, 2010). Along with books, she has published many journal articles, and presented workshops and master classes on performing, auditioning and singing in various places throughout the UK, Europe and the United States.
She has been a Grand Jury member for BAFTA, The National Theatre of Scotland, the Global Search for New Musicals, an Assistant Editor of Theatre Journal, An Associate Director for Theatreworks, London, and an Associate Playwright for the Ensemble Studio Theatre in Los Angeles.
Programme Leader in Acting
Iain graduated with a First Class Honours degree from the Paul McCartney-inspired Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts – Iain received his degree from Sir Paul himself! Winner of the Philip Holt prize, Iain has directed and performed in a diverse range of productions throughout the UK to critical acclaim, including new musicals, classic plays and workshop performances.
Iain has had over 15 years experience in teaching and is currently a Fellow of the Higher Education Authority. He has been a guest lecturer at some of the most prestigious conservatoire drama schools in the UK including Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, Royal Scottish Academy for Music and Drama (now RCS) and The Birmingham School of Acting. Iain lectures in Directing, Improvisation, Narrative skills and Acting Technique. Although Stanislavski-based, his teaching & directing combine a variety of influences and styles. Iain was a selector and workshop leader with the National Student Drama Festival for seven years and has worked for the Princes Trust, helping young people with their performance skills.
Some of his directing credits include; Lotty’s War (Giddy Ox, UK Tour); Vincent in Brixton (BAC); The Glass Menagerie (Gale Theatre of London and Barbados), Mathew Miller, (Northcott Theatre); The European Premiere of the new musical Flight of the Lawnchair Man (BAC), About Face, (Cardiff Search For New Musicals), Tiny Tiny Tales (Stephen Joseph Theatre).
Credits for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival include: Confessions of Julian Po (European Premier and nominated for Musical Theatre Matters Awards, a part of the Fringe First Awards), Elegies for Angels Punks and Raging Queens, Blues In the Night and the European premiere of 3hree. Others include Fathers and Sons (RSAMD), Hitchcock Blonde, (The Crescent Theatre), The House of Yes, The Memory of Water (The Old Joint Stock Theatre) The Libertine (The Birmingham Old Rep), Guid Sisters, Trips (BSA); A Small Family Business, August Osage County, They Shoot Horses Don’t They, Oleanna, A Man of No Importance, Good, Twelfth Night, 12 Angry Men, Time and the Conways, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Crucible (LIPA).
Lecturer in Acting
Ian Dunn is a lecturer in the Acting Department at Edinburgh Napier and lectures in screen technique, acting theory encompassing many styles and influences, and directs across all media. Recent projects for the Festival have included productions of Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me and Fourplay (European Premiere) as director.
Ian studied acting at the Central School of Speech and Drama and has been a professional actor for over twenty years.
Having started his professional career at Scarborough with a season for Alan Ayckbourn, he went on to work at the Royal Court Theatre in London in many plays over the years: Six Degrees of Separation, Babies, I am Yours, Toast, Fucking Games and Terrorism.
Ian also worked at the RSC, the Royal National Theatre and Hampstead Theatre on a regular basis in plays such as Chips With Everything, Our Boys, Loveplay, Osama the Hero, A Doll’s House and Somewhere, to name only a few. Amongst the many writers he has worked with are Richard Bean, Jonathan Harvey, Moira Buffini, Dennis Kelly and David Edgar, and directors Phylida Lloyd, Howard Davies, Dominic Cooke, Tony Clarke, Matthew Dunster, Thea Sharrock and Richard Wilson.
Ian has appeared in many television productions over the years in both guest roles and as a series regular. Programmes include Waking the Dead, Holby City, Silent Witness, Murphy’s Law, Sea of Souls, Eastenders, The Bill, Gulliver’s Travels, French and Saunders, Heartbeat, Red Cap, Trust, Doctors, London’s Burning, Peak Practice, Bad Girls, Pulling, Shine On Harvey Moon, Soldier Soldier, Casualty, A Touch Of Frost, Bliss, Reach for the Moon, Girls in Love, and most recently River City, and in Coronation Street as Vinnie Powers.
His film credits include Screen Two: Stone Scissors Paper, Screen Two: The Merrihill Millionaires, American Friends and Bye Bye Baby. Ian also has numerous BBC Radio productions to his credit.