Big Screen Symposium

An award-winning actor and director, Miranda Harcourt, ONZM, began her career starring in the 80’s TV series GLOSS. She travelled as a Winston Churchill Fellow to London where she studied drama-therapy at the Central School of Speech and Drama. On her return to New Zealand, Miranda devised and wrote the now-classic play Verbatim with William Brandt, touring it around every prison in NZ — as well as to prisons, schools, theatres and festivals all over the world.

Miranda was Head of Acting at Toi Whakaari: NZ Drama School for seven years. Her tenure was celebrated for establishing a close connection between the training institution and the wider industry.

Miranda is now established as an acting coach of international acclaim. The many films she has coached on include Gabor Csupo’s BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA (2007), Peter Jackson’s THE LOVELY BONES (2009), Gaylene Preston’s HOME BY CHRISTMAS (2010) and Jane Campion’s BRIGHT STAR (2009) and TOP OF THE LAKE (2013). Most recently, Miranda was coach on Garth Davis’ hugely successful feature film LION which was nominated for six academy awards.

Miranda coaches actors across the spectrum from Nicole Kidman, Anna Sophia Robb, Rose McIver, Dev Patel and other successful practitioners to weekly teenage classes at Rata Studios, Wellington. She lectures and teaches all over the world.

Miranda and husband Stuart McKenzie have been at the forefront of verbatim theatre both in NZ and internationally with the iconic works Verbatim (1992) and Portraits (1995). Subsequently, their ground-breaking biographical pieces Flowers from My Mother’s Garden (1998) and Biography of My Skin (2009) were met with national acclaim.

Together, Harcourt and McKenzie have co-directed the upcoming young-adult feature film THE CHANGEOVER, distributed by Vendetta, produced by Firefly Films and starring Timothy Spall, Lucy Lawless, Nicholas Galitzine, Melanie Lynskey, and Erana James.

See Miranda in the following session:

Case Study: THE CHANGEOVER – Sunday 1 October, 1.20pm.