Mark Shenton, 22 April 2010
|Born||Mark Charles Warren Shenton
12 September 1962
Johannesburg, South Africa
Mark Shenton (born 12 September 1962 in Johannesburg, South Africa) is a London-based British arts journalist and theatre critic. Between April 2002 and December 2013 he was chief Theatre Critic for the Sunday Express. He also writes a daily blog for The Stage online as well as reviews and features for the weekly newspaper, and contributes to newspapers and theatre magazines in the UK and around the world.
Up to the age of 16 he was educated at St John's College, Johannesburg. He took O and A levels at Albany College, London then in 1982 took up studies at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge where he read law, graduating in 1985 and gaining his MA Cantab in 1987.
His first job in London came in 1986 at Dewynters plc where he edited and co-ordinated the publication of theatre programmes and souvenir brochures for West End and Broadway shows. He became editor for Arts and Entertainment at the Press Association in October 1990, and subsequently managing editor for Arts and Lifestyle, finance data and television listings, before becoming a freelance arts journalist in April 2002, specialising in theatre.
Shenton is the London correspondent for Playbill.com, is associate editor of Theatrevoice.com and has written theatre blogs for The Guardian online, as well as contributing monthly features to West End theatre programmes.
Departure from the Sunday Express
On 5 December 2013 he announced via a column in The Stage that he had been asked to leave the staff of the Sunday Express as a result of some naked pictures of himself having been posted to a gay website. He acknowledged the content of the pictures as being "private, personal (but entirely legal)", stating that the images had been taken over 20 years ago and posted without his consent. Shenton described the decision to let him go as having "a certain irony" because the paper's owner Richard Desmond was a publisher of pornographic magazines during the period when the pictures were taken. The Sunday Express is said to dispute Shenton's version of events.
- Harden's Theatregoers Handbook, co-authored with Roger Foss, Harden's Ltd (2004) ISBN 1-873721-65-X, ISBN 978-1-873721-65-0