Tireless work of departing Marina Theatre boss praised

Martin Halliday.

Martin Halliday. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2010

The Marina Theatre Trust have praised the efforts of departing theatre boss Martin Halliday, as he prepares for new challenges.

A statement said: 'Martin Halliday has made the decision to step down as chief executive of the Marina Theatre Trust having served in the role for five years and previously managed the venue on behalf of Waveney District Council for the preceding nine. The move comes as Mr Halliday leaves to pursue other opportunities within the theatre industry.

'Mr Halliday's sole artistic vision for the venue saw him substantially improve the Marina audience, financial performance and standing both within the industry and local community enabling him to successfully submit a tender to operate the venue to Waveney District Council in 2011 and he subsequently played an integral role in the formation of the Marina Theatre Trust, sustaining the theatre as both a vibrant and viable cultural and community asset for Lowestoft and the surrounding areas.

'Mr Halliday continually developed the theatre programme introducing the highly successful annual professional pantomime, touring musicals, major artistes including top names from music and comedy, live drama and the hugely popular cinema operation for which a major digital upgrade was undertaken in 2013 allowing an alternative content strand to be introduced. He also secured the prestigious residency with the world renowned Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for the town which recently began an 11th season of concerts at the Marina.

'During his tenure, both he and the venue have received numerous national and community awards and he has also overseen significant development to the theatre premises including the restoration and refurbishment of the Edwardian auditorium, procuring and developing the adjacent three-storey building which now serves as a successful catering operation, new box office, gallery, administrative office and second theatre performance space. A major project to repair the roof and restore the venue's historic facade is set to commence this summer.'

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Founding chairman of the Marina Theatre Trust board of directors, Hazel Clover, added: 'Martin has worked tirelessly to develop the venue building, programme and audiences to put the theatre in the strong position it is in now. His knowledge and passion for the theatre business is extensive and the board wish him every success as he moves on to new challenges and we thank him for his endeavours over the years.'

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