SPOTLIGHT: Chris Hawkins as Father Gerald a family priest in the stage production 2 Doors Down. Photo: Nolan Verheij-Full
SPOTLIGHT: Chris Hawkins as Father Gerald a family priest in the stage production 2 Doors Down. Photo: Nolan Verheij-Full

Tweed man is council worker by day and actor by night

ENGINEERING designer by day and stage star by night, Chris Hawkins got his big break four years ago when discovered by Tweed Theatre director Tracy Kris at South Pacific auditions.

Mr Hawkins was going for a minor role but, despite first-time nerves, was chosen to star as Emile DeBeque because of his undeniable X factor.

"I was really impressed with Chris's stage presence. He was a little bit young to play the lead role, however, the chemistry between him and the other leads was wonderful," said Ms Kris.

After his stage debut, Mr Hawkins continued to take acting gigs at local theatre companies while juggling a public servant role at the Tweed Shire Council. Although it's logistically challenging to produce shows like My Fair Lady while working full time, Mr Hawkins says the creatvie cross-over between the roles makes it possible for him to enjoy both.

"As a civil engineer designer, you're working on concepting new plans using creative ideas with the vision of others."

"At the moment I'm handling the design for the upgrade for Arkinstall sports park in South Tweed and designing the engineering of the site for ease of use and construction.

"With the theatre, the stage is a blank canvas on which you create scenes with the producer, and the director, using actors.

The parallel between the two is creativity, and the visualisation of the final product as the key driver," he said.

Mr Hawkins made the transition from amateur acting to paid professional and has played as an extra in Blue Heelers, Sea Change, Terra Nova, Reef Doctors, amongst others.

Camp (filmed at Crabbes Creek) and films Mental (filmed in Banora Point), Bad Karma, Fatal Honeymoon and Mystery Road.

He's also produced and acted in The Cuba'n Puzzle, a short film which made the top 100 at the 2013 Tropfest.

You can catch Mr Hawkins in 2 Doors Down in which he plays Stan, a radio game show host and Father Gerald a family priest.

The Murwillumbah Theatre Company production opened last night. at the Murwillumbah Civic Centre.

The play

We've all been there - too much sun, alcohol and in-laws. 2 Doors Down, chronicles one family's attempt to cope with life over Christmas.

March dates: Friday 14, 21; Saturday today, 15, 22 at 7.30 pm; Sunday 16, 23 at 2pm.

Tickets: $15 at Murwillumbah Music Shop 02 66 72054 04



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