April Phillips

April Phillips was born in Coventry, England.  Her professional theatre career began as a company actor with Four Seasons Theatre in Wanganui in the 1980s. She attributes her ´basic training´ to NZ theatre legend director David Smiles, with whom she performed in many classic comedies and farces. April has a Masters Degree in Scriptwriting from the International Institute of Modern Letters at Victoria University of Wellington. She was the recipient of the Michael Hirschfeld Scholarship for Scriptwriting.

April has performed in theatres all over New Zealand. Her TV work includes being part of the core case of TV’s satirical comedy McPhail and Gadsby for two seasons. Her other television and film acting credits include Cover Story I & II, The Frighteners, First Impressions, Duggan,The Strip, The Lost Children, The Lovely Bones, Passion in Paradise, the feature filmEternity, and Mr Wilkins.

April honed her comedy writing skills as a member of the acclaimed and award winningHens Teeth female comedy troupe for 10 years.  Her comedy is sharply influenced by the British TV shows she grew up with such as Fawlty Towers, Dad’s Army, It Ain’t Half Hot Mum to name a few.

In 1996 April co-wrote and performed in Fluxion at Bats Theatre. She produced and appeared in her first full-length play, Killing Me Softly at Taki Rua Theatre later that year. Her full length comedy STiFF was one of four plays selected for the 2002 Adam Playreading Series. STiFF has been an international hit with sold-out productions all over New Zealand and Australia, Norfolk Island and London. Death & Taxe$ had its world premiere in Tauranga in August 2010. Bonking James Bond, won the PANZ One Act Play award 2010, and Snip was a finalist in the 2012 SWANZ awards. These two short plays have been written to complement each other as a double-bill full length show. Motelpremiered in 2013 at the Basement Theatre Auckland.

April’s musical play Blue Eyes won the 2003 Stellar Award for Best Musical Production and was performed at Circa Theatre, Wellington. Her musical stage show Unforgettable has been performed at Old St Paul’s in Wellington, the Globe Theatre in Palmerston North, and at jazz festivals around the country.

April has written two plays recorded by Radio New Zealand – In Two Minds (winner in the Radio New Zealand Drama Student Shorts competition) and As Seen On TV.

She has also written and produced the films Letter for Hope and Utu Pihikete.