Orcadian Stories – Norman Rushbrook: The Men In Black

Orcadian Stories – Norman Rushbrook: The Men In Black

Orcadian Stories: a short film series by Martin Laird for The Orkney News. Promotional image showing the first 4 interviewees, supporting Scotland's Year of Stories 2022.
Orcadian Stories, for Scotland’s Year of Stories 2022.

Norman Rushbrook was lighting manager of the St. Magnus Festival from its inception. In this short film, called The Men In Black after the unobtrusive clothes that stage crew wear, Norman tells some stories of his time with the Festival. This is the second of three interviews with people involved with the St. Magnus Festival in its early days – George Rendall and Eleanor Turner being the others. Sadly several other key figures such as Sir. Peter Maxwell Davies are no longer with us.

“We were putting Shakespeare in the Picky Centre; we were putting opera in the auction mart. All these sort of things were just unreal really.”

Norman Rushbrook, Orcadian Stories – The Men In Black

The Men In Black was filmed in St. Magnus Cathedral while members of the stage crew set up and performers rehearsed. Thank you to them for providing some ambience to the recording.

Norman Rushbrook’s interview is free to watch online via The Orkney News YouTube channel.

Filmed and edited by Martin Laird, researched by Fiona Grahame, and produced by Orkney News Ltd, Orcadian Stories is a series of short filmed interviews of people who have played a part in creating a cultural legacy for Orkney. The films focus on individuals telling their stories, and include original theme music composed by Orkney musician Eamonn Keyes (based upon the sound of a spinning radio televisor).

Orcadian Stories has been supported by the Year of Stories 2022 Community Stories Fund. This fund is being delivered in partnership between VisitScotland and Museums Galleries Scotland with support from National Lottery Heritage Fund thanks to National Lottery players. 

Logos for Year of Stories 2022, Heritage Fund, Museums Galleries Scotland, and Event Scotland.

An exhibition of portrait photos of the interviewees from the Orcadian Stories series will open at Northlight Gallery at 11am on Saturday the 26th of November. This exhibition is being held in conjunction with St. Andrews Fair Saturday, which exists as an antidote to the rampant consumerism of Black Friday. Fair Saturday events raise money for charity, and the Orcadian Stories portrait exhibition will be raising funds for Orkney Rape and Sexual Assault Service.

Norman Rushbrook, portrait by Martin Laird of Norman wearing his St Magnus Festival stage crew uniform, taken in St. Magnus Cathedral. Black and white.
Norman Rushbrook by Martin Laird, 2022.