20 May 2021

It is with much sadness that we announce the passing away of Iris Churn this morning. A  member of the theatre since 1955, and a stalwart of the HLT Wardrobe, Iris, who was known for her work both off stage and on, will always be remembered and will remain in our hearts forever. Our condolences to the family. The funeral will be held at Howick Funeral Home, 36 Wellington St, Howick, on Friday, May 28, at 10am. 

Iris joined the HLT in 1955, just a year after the theatre was created – 66 years of membership. She acted in a number of plays while she and Stan raised their family. It didn’t take long for Iris’s sewing skills to be recognised, and she went on to become the founder of the HLT Wardrobe, one of the most comprehensive amongst community theatres in New Zealand. This will long be her HLT legacy. Iris had a busy career with theatre work outside the HLT. She ran her own casting agency for many years, and utilised her HLT contacts well in resourcing the annual medical exams where everyone got to play people with secret health issues! Her television work included roles in Beyond Reasonable Doubt in 1980 and The Brokenwood Mysteries in 2014. But the TV role many of us will always remember her in was as Janet Frame’s mother in An Angel At My Table.

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