Many hands make light work: the involvement of the wider Auckland art and literary scene.

The items displayed in this section reveal the contribution of figures within Auckland's wider art and literary scene to amateur theatre. It further traces a social milieu of closely intertwined figures that stamped the productions with their own personal style. Musgrove certainly provided great leadership but it was his vision combined with the working effort of a team that helped to realise these productions.

Material in this collection reveal contributions from, amongst others, Auckland photographer and graphic designer, Clifton Firth (1904-1980); printmaker, publisher and typographer, Robert William 'Bob' Lowry (1912-1963); poet, artist and University staff member A.R.D. Fairburn (1904-1957). Musgrove himself was a part of this scene and maintained a close friendship with Fairburn, living just around the corner from him in the suburb of Devonport.

The learning opportunities provided by amateur theatre to emerging artists or performers have helped to establish many professional careers. Elam graduate Russell Craig whose design work is represented in the collection, later worked for Auckland's Mercury theatre. He now lives in England and has continued his career in theatre design, undertaking work for the Scottish Opera and the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Auckland Libraries. (2013). Clifton Firth. Retrieved from
Hughes, P. H. (2000). Bob Lowry and the Pelorus Press, 1945-531. In P. Griffith, P.H. Hughes and A. Loney (Eds.) A Book in the Hand: Essays on the History of the Book. (pp. 167-183). Auckland: Auckland University Press.
Auckland’s amateur theatre scene
Musgrove’s vision
Many hands make light work…