Harold Baigent

16 Nov 1916
9 Mar 1996
Film Industry
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Harold Verdun Baigent (16 November 1916 – 9 March 1996), known as ‘Baige’, was a New Zealand theatre director, actor and arts manager.

He trained as an actor in the USA at Yale University Drama School, and acted in Broadway and London stage productions, before returning to New Zealand in the late 1940s, where he founded his own drama company and worked as a drama tutor and stage manager.

In the 1960s he settled in Melbourne, Australia. As director of the Emerald Hill Theatre Company and the Victorian Travelling Theatre, he was an influential figure in the Victorian theatrical scene, and played a significant role in promoting the arts in regional Victoria and South Australia.

As an actor, Baigent was known for many parts on Australian film and television, including roles in the film Gallipoli and the television series The Flying Doctors, and a memorable introductory monologue at the beginning of the film Mad Max 2.

He was director of the Council of Adult Education in Adelaide, South Australia for many years, and founded the Arts Train, an innovative travelling arts project that toured small towns throughout South Australia and Victoria.

He retired to the Heathcote area in the 1980s, but continued to be actively involved in theatre and the arts there until his death in 1996.

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