Author(s): Peter Bland
Peter Bland has enjoyed an outstanding career in the arts in New Zealand and the UK. Born in Yorkshire, he emigrated in 1954 and worked with the NZBC to establish some of New Zealand?s first arts and social commentary programmes, He was a co-founder of Downstage theatre and its artistic director from 1964?68. He was associated with the Wellington group of poets and a close friend of James K Baxter, Louis Johnson and Alistair Campbell. As an actor in the 1970s and ?80s Peter appeared in numerous West End comedies, as a guest artist on many UK television programmes, and at the Bristol Old Vic, the Chichester Festival Theatre and The Palladium.. He returned to New Zealand in 1984 to star in Came a Hot Friday, for which he won a GOFTA best film actor award. He was also twice nominated for best TV actor. Peter Bland?s Selected Poems was published by Carcanet in the UK in 1998. He was for many years poetry critic for The London Magazine, and has twice been a major prizewinner in the Observer/Arvon Foundation international poetry competition. Peter has received both a British Society of Authors Cholmondeley Award and a Melbourne Festival Literary Award for his poetry. He lives in Auckland and regularly reviews poetry for the NZ Listener.