Hal Martin has left the manager’s job at the Theatre Royal for “personal reasons”. Photo: Charles Anderson.

New Theatre Royal manager gone after three months

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New Theatre Royal manger Hal Martin has walked off the job after only being in the position for three months.

Chair of the Nelson Historic Theatre Trust, Mark Christensen, confirmed Hal’s resignation last week.

“I can confirm that Hal has resigned – he left the Theatre on 17 August. Personal reasons, I understand,” he told Nelson Weekly.

It is understood that the surprise departure has left the small but dedicated theatre team scrambling to fill the gaps.

Mark says they are conducting a review of operations before they move forward in finding a replacement.

Hal started the job in May, taking over from former manager Janice Marthen.

Wellington-born and raised, Hal was new to Nelson. In an interview with the Weekly in July, he said was keen to come back to New Zealand after working in Australia for nine years.

His previous job titles include the general manager of Arts Margaret River, manager of the Griffith (NSW) Regional Theatre and Art Gallery and manager of the Uxbridge Creative Centre in Auckland.

Hal said he was “starting a bit from scratch in terms of understanding the New Zealand theatre scene” but had a vision to bring in more travelling shows to Nelson as well as involving seniors and young people more in the theatre.

The job description from February highlighted that the manager’s role was expansive, requiring overseeing all administrative, marketing, production and financial functions of the theatre, as well as an enthusiastic attraction and/or understanding of the Nelson performing arts community.