Obituaries

Obituaries

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Andy Nairn

June 11th 1986 to November 26th 2020.

Thoughts from Jay Bridges.

I had the pleasure of being Andy’s colleague and the absolute privilege of being his friend. At his funeral, I had the honour of reading his eulogy, in it I talked about an entire nation of Theatre workers; Production Managers, sound designers, lighting designers, hundreds of roles who worked with Andy during his career, an entire nation represented by five of us at his funeral. But to see the overwhelming reaction from the Theatre world was incredibly humbling and would have meant the world to Andy. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an outpouring of care, emotion, and genuine sadness from an industry, on learning of the illness and untimely death of a friend and colleague. That was the measure of the man, that was an indication of how well respected, loved and highly thought of Andy was. Those that know him well also know that he not so secretly enjoyed having a grumpy side, but as night follows day, seconds after being a miserable sod you’d all be laughing along to something. There was also a beautiful, kind, loving side to Andy, there was nothing he wouldn’t do for his friends and in particular, his family. His three daughters and his wife were his world and nobody will feel his loss more than them. Leicester Curve, Nottingham Playhouse and Derby Theatre joined together to light their buildings red in memory of our friend and colleague, a small act to symbolise what one person meant to an entire industry and the loss that will be felt for years to come. Although Andy may be gone, it is on us; friends, family, colleagues to ensure that Andy’s memory and legacy lives on, that is why I’m so proud of the reaction and to throw my whole hearted support to the Andy Nairn Bursary for Technical Theatre, ensuring that his name and memory lives on in those who follow in his footsteps. Andy’s Career During his, 16-year-long career, Andy Nairn became a prominent, popular and respected backstage figure in theatre in the Midlands and, since 2019, as Head of Production at Leicester Curve. He began his career at the Westacre Theatre in his native Norfolk before moving to Derby to study Theatre Arts at the city’s university. Having worked throughout his course at Derby Playhouse (now Derby Theatre), he took a full-time job there as Deputy Head of Stage in 2006. He spent six years at Nottingham Playhouse as a stage technician from 2008, during which time he toured extensively with productions such as Perry Henzell’s Caribbean musical The Harder They Come (2010), Arnold Wesker’s Roots (2012) and Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan’s adaptation of George Orwell’s 1984, co-produced with Headlong and the Almeida Theatre, which was also seen in the West End at the Playhouse Theatre in 2014. The same year, Andy returned to Derby Theatre as Technical Manager, where he stayed for four years, becoming Head of Production and Premises for 18 months before joining Leicester’s Curve in 2019.

The Andy Nairn Bursary

Throughout his career, Andy worked with a vast number of young people. Many of these individuals have gone on to secure prestigious jobs in theatres and venues up and down the country or have attend universities to further study Technical Theatre. Encouraging and teaching a new generation of theatre technicians is something that was always close to Andy’s heart. In recognition of this, Nottingham Playhouse, Derby Theatre and Curve Leicester have set up a bursary in Andy’s name to provide technical training and experience for young people. You can find full details and make a donation here.

Andy Nairn

June 11th 1986 to November 26th 2020 Thoughts from Jay Bridges I had the pleasure of being Andy’s colleague and the absolute privilege of being his friend. At his funeral, I had the honour of reading his eulogy, in it I talked about an entire nation of Theatre workers; Production Managers, sound designers, lighting designers, hundreds of roles who worked with Andy during his career, an entire nation represented by five of us at his funeral. But to see the overwhelming reaction from the Theatre world was incredibly humbling and would have meant the world to Andy. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an outpouring of care, emotion, and genuine sadness from an industry, on learning of the illness and untimely death of a friend and colleague. That was the measure of the man, that was an indication of how well respected, loved and highly thought of Andy was. Those that know him well also know that he not so secretly enjoyed having a grumpy side, but as night follows day, seconds after being a miserable sod you’d all be laughing along to something. There was also a beautiful, kind, loving side to Andy, there was nothing he wouldn’t do for his friends and in particular, his family. His three daughters and his wife were his world and nobody will feel his loss more than them. Leicester Curve, Nottingham Playhouse and Derby Theatre joined together to light their buildings red in memory of our friend and colleague, a small act to symbolise what one person meant to an entire industry and the loss that will be felt for years to come. Although Andy may be gone, it is on us; friends, family, colleagues to ensure that Andy’s memory and legacy lives on, that is why I’m so proud of the reaction and to throw my whole hearted support to the Andy Nairn Bursary for Technical Theatre, ensuring that his name and memory lives on in those who follow in his footsteps. Andy’s Career During his, 16-year-long career, Andy Nairn became a prominent, popular and respected backstage figure in theatre in the Midlands and, since 2019, as Head of Production at Leicester Curve. He began his career at the Westacre Theatre in his native Norfolk before moving to Derby to study Theatre Arts at the city’s university. Having worked throughout his course at Derby Playhouse (now Derby Theatre), he took a full-time job there as Deputy Head of Stage in 2006. He spent six years at Nottingham Playhouse as a stage technician from 2008, during which time he toured extensively with productions such as Perry Henzell’s Caribbean musical The Harder They Come (2010), Arnold Wesker’s Roots (2012) and Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan’s adaptation of George Orwell’s 1984, co-produced with Headlong and the Almeida Theatre, which was also seen in the West End at the Playhouse Theatre in 2014. The same year, Andy returned to Derby Theatre as Technical Manager, where he stayed for four years, becoming Head of Production and Premises for 18 months before joining Leicester’s Curve in 2019. The Andy Nairn Bursary Throughout his career, Andy worked with a vast number of young people. Many of these individuals have gone on to secure prestigious jobs in theatres and venues up and down the country or have attend universities to further study Technical Theatre. Encouraging and teaching a new generation of theatre technicians is something that was always close to Andy’s heart. In recognition of this, Nottingham Playhouse, Derby Theatre and Curve Leicester have set up a bursary in Andy’s name to provide technical training and experience for young people. You can find full details and make a donation here.

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