Edinburgh Theatre Arts

Create. Challenge. Entertain.

Mike Duffy

I joined ETA a long time ago as a very green 17 year old  for a walk-on part in ”My Three Angels”. I went on to bigger things under the eagle eye of Charlie Johnstone, our first director. Charlie opened my eyes to the possibilities of acting and directing, and fuelled my passion for the theatre. I learned a lot - above all the power of the pause and silence – those thrilling moments in live theatre when time stops and the audience holds its breath! 

I never went to drama college but ETA was a great training ground. After Charlie retired to the Borders we developed a team of talented, dedicated actors and directors which did great work over the years, particularly in our beloved Coach House Theatre in Ferry Road.
I went professional a few years ago, but I remain an active member of the company.  My favourite parts for ETA include Felix in “The Odd Couple”; John Proctor in “The Crucible”;  and Willy Loman in “Death of a Salesman”.

As director my best work includes “ The Mystery Plays”, Liz Lochhead’s “Dracula”;  Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”;  Dennis Potter’s “Blue Remembered Hills” and Chekhov’s “The Cherry Orchard”.
After being one of the leading lights in the ETA firmament, joining the professional ranks was quite a shock.  I knew that over 75% of actors are out of work, and it was a steep learning curve jostling with a host of already established actors competing for any part that came up.  As a professional, I am not a star but I have done a range of interesting and challenging work on stage, film, and TV. Also I’ve spent four exciting years as a consultant on Communication for a major company based in Switzerland which honed my role-playing skills.

You are never too old to learn!