Editor, Modern Theatres 1950-2020

David Staples worked as a theatre consultant for 44 years in some 67 countries, advising on diverse projects from national and international opera houses, concert halls and theatres to many smaller-scale venues.

He generally worked with clients and architects at the inception of projects, attempting to transform a concept or spark of an idea into a viable project. His expertise in strategic planning and feasibility studies is grounded in 40 years’ experience of helping to develop prominent and successful venues.

Once he has gained an understanding of the project goals and the groups who will use the space, David is able to advise on all aspects, from assessing the feasibility and expanding the possibilities of the project, to raising investment, brief writing, and selecting suitable architects and consultants.

David has contributed to the international theatre and arts management community for many years, chairing the Society of Theatre Consultants, acting as a board member of the International Society of Performing Arts (ISPA), and speaking regularly at international conferences. He was the chair of the editorial board for the 2014 and 2018 International Theatre Engineering and Architecture Conferences. He is a Fellow and Honorary Member of the Association of British Theatres Technicians and a Chartered Fellow of the Institute of Management.

His contribution to arts management was recognised in 2007, when he was awarded the ISPA Patrick Hayes Award, in 2018 he received their International Citation of Merit, presented for unique lifetime achievement which has enriched the international performing arts.

David’s projects have included:

  • Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, Singapore
  • Opera House, Oslo, Norway
  • Dubai Opera House, United Arab Emirates
  • Portland Center for Performing Arts, Oregon, USA
  • National Theatre of Bahrain, Manama, Bahrain
  • Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, California, USA
  • Onassis Cultural Centre, Athens, Greece
  • Royal Opera House, Muscat, Oman
  • Calgary Centre for Performing Arts, Alberta, Canada
  • The Lowry, Salford, UK
  • West Kowloon Cultural District Masterplan, Hong Kong, China

David continues to lecture and advise on specific projects of interest.

Twenty seat amphitheatre at David’s house in Slovenia, his smallest and lowest cost theatre