Possessed of a marvellous voice, a fierce intelligence and wonderfully dry humour, Stuart Devenie is recognised as one of New Zealand's finest actors; - moving effortlessly between complex classical texts and popularist New Zealand comedies. Colin McColl

Stuart Devenie's theatrical and television career stretches back to his first performance as Mr Dungbeetle in The Insect Play at age twelve in Hastings.  For over three decades now he has played leads in New Zealand, in many well loved plays and television drama, working everywhere from Kaitaia in the North to Riverton in the South.

Stuart has always had a strong interest in training and teaching, and the development of new New Zealand playscripts.  He was a founding member of Circa Theatre in Wellington and has been an Associate Director at The Court Theatre in Christchurch and Artistic Director at Centrepoint Theatre in Palmerston North. He had a stint as senior drama tutor at the New Zealand Drama School, directing the graduating students in Ten High Stories (a programme of New Zealand short stories). 

Stuart has taught at the Northland Polytechnic, at Toi Whakaari/New Zealand Drama School, as well as numerous workshops for primaray, secondary and University classes.  He was a member of the New Zealand Qualifications Authority which promulgated the unit standards for Drama.

Stuart has directed Hobson's Choice, Side by Side by Side by Sondheim, The Philadelphia Story Private Lives, Blithe Spirit, Cold Turkey and The Learner's Stand for Court Theatre.  Also at Court he has made acting appearances in Song Trilogy, The Importance of Being Earnest, Arsenic and Old Lace, Madam Butterfly, Treasure Island and Larnach.  

He has performed the lead in many Auckland Theatre Company productions including Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Hatch, Disgrace, Caligula, The Talented Mr Ripley, Ladies Night, Middle Age Spread, Take a Chance on Me, Copenhagen, Serial Killers, The Cripple of Irishman, Twelve Angry Men, Uncle Vanya, Molly Sweeney and The Atrocity.  He has also directed a number of the Company's plays including The Orderly Business of Life and The God Boy. 

Stuart has also appeared in many roles in numerous television dramas including Street Legal, Mercy Peak, Spin Doctors, Jack of all Trades, Hercules, Market Forces and Willy Nilly.  He appeared in the German/New Zealand co-production feature film Te Rua written and directed by Barry Barclay (Laureate) and Brain Dead, the Peter Jackson Zombie-splatter movie.

Stuart is also one of the top voice-over artists with lead roles in many radio dramas and voicing top brand campaigns for New Zealand radio, television and cinema.

Stuart received an Arts Foundation Laureate Award in 2010.  He lives in Auckland.


Stuart Devenie talks to Kate Mead at the 2010 Laureate Awards in Dunedin about characters and villains.
Stuart Devenie (actor) features on the TVNZ 7 broadcast of The Artists, produced in partnership with the Arts Foundation


Poet Ian Wedde, actor Stuart Devenie and singer-wongwriter Sean James Donnelly (SJD) discuss why they create their work. Steve Braunias and Paul Bushnall also contribute.
Born Hasting, New Zealand
Joined Hasting's Group Theatre Junior Group
First pay-cheque for acting in late night production at Downstage Theatre, Wellington
Employed by then NZBC as radio drama producer - produced or appeared in over 40 productions and nearly 200 Broadcast to Schools productions.
Transfered to Television Light Entertainment Department;Founding Councillor of Circa Theatre, Wellington
Travelled to UK and worked in weekly Repertory Summer Stock;Acted or directed three Christmas pantomimes;Company Manager for national tour of two West End presentations
Returned to New Zealand;Appeared in and directed many Court Theatre, Christchurch, productions
Artistic Director of Centrepoint Theatre in Palmerston North.
  Senior drama tutor at the New Zealand Drama School
    Established the theatre company, Playfair Ltd, in Whangarei
    Member of the New Zealand order of Merit, for services to entertainment.
    Toured highly acclaimed one-man show Hatch: Plight of the Penguins around New Zealand and at Ten Days on the Island Festival, Tasmania;Toured with Roger Hall's Four Flat Whites in Italy
       Arts Foundation of New Zealand Laureate Award