Fife theatre designer’s surprise at OBE

Bunny Christie grew up in Blebo Craigs. Pic: Johan Persson
Bunny Christie grew up in Blebo Craigs. Pic: Johan Persson

A production designer from north east Fife has spoken of her ‘surprise’ when she found out she was to be given an OBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.

Bunny (Karen Anne) Christie was given the honour in recognition of her services to theatre, having worked on shows across Europe and the US, collecting numerous awards in the process.

She has collected three Olivier awards and a Tony – but she admitted it was still a “very big surprise” when she found out she would be getting an OBE.

Bunny grew up in Blebo Craigs, attending Madras College, before going to study at Central Saint Martins in London.

Among the shows she has designed sets for is Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, which she described as a highlight.

“Curious is still one of my favourite shows,” Bunny said.

“It’s lovely to have your work seen by many thousands of people all over the world.”

She has recently designed a free-for-schools mini version of the show, which will be touring schools across the UK.

She is currently designing A Midsummer Nights Dream at The Bridge Theatre in London. She is also visiting New York for the opening of ‘Ink’ on Broadway and then Geneva for opera ‘Medea’, both of which she designed.

“The UK is a leader in the design industries – we export talent around the world and the UK film and theatre industries have a wealth of skills and opportunity,” Bunny said. “I’m very proud to be part of exporting and promoting British design around the world and being part of the creative industry in the UK.”

Bunny is also keen on making sure young people, especially women, get a chance to enter the profession.

She said there were “surprisingly few” female production designers and directors when she entered the business. While she says the situation has improved since then, she is keen to encourage more to get involved. In 2015, Bunny initiated a design bursary at The National Theatre, which employs two young designers for a year at NT.