Dave has been tinkering and making things since childhood. Lego, meccano, cardboard boxes into houses and forts for action men. He joined Mind the Gap in 2008 as Production Manager where he finds, makes and uses all the things the company needs to put on its high quality shows. Here he shares some of his fond childhood memories and how he came to be working at Mind the Gap.
“I’ve always been interested in theatre and shows, I remember being the giant in a play at primary school. I had to stand behind something and pass hula hoop sized gold coins out without being seen! Secondary school saw me in Hiawatha as Mudjekeewis – the west wind standing on top of a stage block mountain with a full stage covering of parachute silk hanging from my shoulders. Parachutes were apparently easy to come by when you were surrounded by North Lincolnshire RAF bases, hope it was old or spare or someone could have had a nasty surprise!
Playing Marcel in Sandy Wilson’s ‘The Boyfriend’ had me singing and dancing! I somehow missed the point where they handed out librettos (the text used in, or intended for, an extended musical work such as an opera or a musical) and scores and ended up learning the whole thing during rehearsals. (I am not sure how I learnt it actually!)
I studied electronics and then trained and worked as a teacher of design and technology, whilst working on gigs and shows at University and in Bradford Theatres. After three years both teaching and working in tech I realised which I preferred and began working full time in theatre. I ran the tech department at St Georges Hall for seven years, working on classical concerts, rock gigs, stand-up, ballet, musicals, and wrestling! In fact if you can think of a style of performance – I have probably worked on such a show.
After a few years of freelancing and IT tutoring in a community training centre I arrived at Mind the Gap and its new studios in Autumn 2008. I first met MtG whilst volunteering as a steward at Bradford Festival in 1990, I had to look after this show which featured a big yellow skip with a crane on top, operated by juggling bin men who turned up for work in a chauffeur driven Rolls Royce!
Working at MtG lets me be more creative. I love getting involved in making the shows not just staging other peoples and sourcing or creating solutions to the strangest of requests. My job description is to: Find it, fit it, fix it!
MtG is the friendliest and most supportive work environment I have ever experienced. Every day is different, often challenging, sometimes exasperating but always, eventually, rewarding.”