Michael Mansfield QC Appointed Chair Of Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse

Photo (c) Philip Vile
PROMINENT social justice barrister Michael Mansfield QC has joined the Board of Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse ahead of becoming Chair of the theatres later in the year. Michael is renowned for representing defendants in criminal trials, appeals and inquiries in some of the most controversial legal cases the country has seen, including 77 of the Hillsborough families at the recent inquests. Alongside his legal work, Michael has a long association with theatre, having helped to establish North London’s Jacksons Lane, become founder member of Theatre in the Round in Newcastle under Lyme before it moved to Stoke and maintained a long and close collaboration with Nicholas Kent whilst at the Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn. He has worked with the Hillsborough families since 2008 in their fight for justice, and is now campaigning to get the same justice for the Orgreave miners whom he first represented in the mid-1980s. Michael’s close links with the Tricycle Theatre in London included assistance on their highly acclaimed and award-winning series of Tribunal Plays.  In the 1980s Michael helped establish the multi-arts venue Jacksons Lane in Highgate, North London, which became an experimental space prior to the West End for companies such as Shared Experience along with other innovative visual theatre and dance companies.  Whilst at University he became a founder member of Theatre in the Round in Newcastle under Lyme where Alan Aykbourn previewed plays before premiering them at the Stephen Joseph Theatre. Michael said: “I have a long standing passion for and association with theatre. I regularly attend performances and have many friends amongst the acting fraternity. Earlier this year I came to the Everyman to watch Madame Bovary which I thoroughly enjoyed. Humour and hope with brilliant acting, it was a wonderful night. “I have developed a huge affinity with Liverpool over the years and I am delighted to be able to twin this with my passion for theatre to support and work with the Everyman & Playhouse into the future. I would like to see the continued development of Theatre as a communal and accessible space. It should embrace and enliven our lives.” Out-going Chair Vince Killen said: “The Board are absolutely delighted that Michael Mansfield has agreed to become the new Chair of the Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse theatres. His outstanding achievements in the legal world, alongside his strong commitment to public service and passion for community engagement, means that Michael is superbly qualified for the role. “I feel extremely honoured and privileged to have been Chair of this fabulous organisation, and I am particularly pleased to be handing over at a time when the theatres are in such a strong position.  I am confident that Michael will help ensure that the theatres continue to go from strength to strength as they enter the next phase of their exciting development.” Executive Director Deborah Aydon said: “Gemma Bodinetz and I are thrilled that Michael will be joining us as Chair at this pivotal point in the theatres’ journey.  As we move into a new era with a fresh approach to making and sharing theatre, we believe above all that the Everyman & Playhouse must be vibrant gathering places for all members of our community.  Our entire team is committed to living our values, and there is no more inspiring example of this than Michael.”