(1973-03-30) March 30, 1973 (age 39), Auckland, New Zealand.
improvisational comedian, actor, clinical hypnotherapist, author and keynote speaker
Keith Johnstone, Viktor Frankl, Albert Ellis, Rollo May, Fritz Perls,Gil Boyne
Evie Ashton (married 2004 - present) 2 children
Wade Jackson (Born 30 March 1973) is a New Zealand improvisational comedian, actor, clinical hypnotherapist, author and keynote speaker. He can be regarded as a polymath due his various successes in the arts, science and business.
Jackson was born to Don and Kaye Jackson in Auckland, New Zealand, on March 30, 1973.
Jackson attended Auckland Grammar school (1986 - 1991) and graduated from the University of Auckland with a Bachelor of Arts in Japanese and English in 1996. He gained a post graduate Diploma in Drama in 1997. In 1992, he travelled to Aomori, Japan as an exchange student and attended Too Gijuku High School. Jackson is currently a postgraduate student at AUT studying towards his PhD in Health Science Career.
Jackson got into comedy as a University student and started doing improv, sketch and stand up comedy in 1994. He was president of the Comedy and Improv Club in 1996 and founded The Improv Bandits the following year. Jackson won the individual Maestro International Show in Calgary Canada in 2000 and has also performed improv comedy theatre in the UK.
The Improv Bandits performed in Melbourne (Australia), Leuven Belgium, Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal (Canada), Chicago, Austin, Los Angeles and New York (USA) and won the Chicago Improv Festival's inaugural Super Cage Match at the ImprovOlympic in 2002 Jackson, Tony Gilbert and Jason Webb from the Improv Bandits were asked to audition for the US TV show Whose Line Is It Anyway at the Big Stinkin' Improv and Sketch Comedy in Austin, Texas (1999). In 2000, The Improv Bandits returned to Los Angeles where Warner Brothers produced The Improv Bandits show at the HBO Warner BrothersTV workspace in Los Angeles. The Improv Bandits have performed four times at the invitation only Chicago Improv Festival and in 2002 opened for Colin Mochrie's All Star show at the Athenaeum Theater. The Improv Bandits also perform in the New Zealand International Comedy Festival every year since 1998. They performed at the NZ Comedy Festival Gala in 2004, 2008, and in 2009 alongside Wayne Brady from Whose Line Is It Anyway.
In the early nineties, Improv in NZ became heavily popularized in part due to the global phenomenon of Keith Johnstone's theatresports. However in the following years, improv theatre became a victim of its own success. Performance improv became competitive and stagnated and lost credibility within the theatre community. As its audience slowly began to disperse, many of New Zealand's major improvisers left the tradition. In 1997, The Improv Bandits sought to reinvent local improv by pitching themseves as a subversive new force performing improv 'without safety nets'. Clawing back audience, Improv Bandit Wade Jackson then opened New Zealand's only dedicated improv theatre; The Covert Theatre in Auckland which operated from 2001 - 2005. It was a 50-seat venue with a fully licenced bar with weekly improv shows. In 2001, Jackson won the New Zealand International Comedy Festival's Most Courageous Producer award as he simultaneously produced eleven shows in the festival. The Covert Theatre also won the Best Achievement award. In March 29, 2011 Jackson produced Christchurch Earthquake Comedy Fundraiser raising $100,000 for Red Cross. It featured top New Zealand comedians such as Mike King, Ewen Gilmour, Brendhan Lovegrove and Dai Henwood.
Jackson started acting in 1997, his first role was a guest role on Xena: Warrior Princess. Since then he has appeared in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Power Rangers, Legend of the Seeker, Spartacus: Vengeance, Eating Media Lunch, Shortland Street, The Pretender and Harry.
Jackson first foray into Martial Arts was at the age of 11 in 1984 where he started practicing the Korean combined martial arts,Jong Hap Mu Sool. In 1992, Jackson trained at the Hirosaki University in Shotokan Karate. He received his JKA (Japan Karate Association) and JKF (Japan Karate Federation) Black belts in 1995 from Fukuoka Dojo in Fukuoka, Japan. In 1996, he started training in Koryu Uchinadi Kempo Jutsu under Hanshi Patrick McCarthy and continues in this tradition today.
Jackson is a registered Clinical Hypnotherapist with a Diploma in Advanced Clinical Hypnotherapy and in 2007 studied with the late master hypnotherapist Gil Boyne. He is also a certified Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) practitioner and has studied Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and Shiatsu, the Japanese acupuncture massage based on Tradition Chinese Medicine. His clinic is currently based in St Benedicts Healthcare Centre in Newton, Auckland.
Jackson specializes in combining the art of improvisation with the science of psychology, neuroscience and best business practices to create practical and effective change techniques for individuals, teams and organisations Jackson presents on 4 main topics around improving performance: Organisational Storytelling,
Resilience & Wellness,
As a consultant and keynote speaker, Wade has worked with thousands of people ranging from CEOs, senior executive teams, Universities, Militaries and not-for-profit organisations. He is also an honorary lecturer in Organisational Behaviour at the AUT University, Faculty of Business and Law and a faculty member of the NZ Institute of Management.
Jackson has written two books Stories at Work (Pindar Publishing, 2011) and JOLT Challenge (Star books, Random House, 2009). They are critically acclaimed praised by leading management thinkers such as Stephen R. Covey, Edward de Bono, business leaders, academia, media and sporting legends. Jackson is currently writing his third book.
Jackson is married to Evie Ashton and they live with their daughter Sabina, son Axel, and two dogs Sophie and Scamp.
Jackson supports the charity organisation of Youth Development and CanTeen and was an ambassador for New Zealand Men's Health Week 2011
Xena: Warrior Princess
Hercules: The Legendary Journeys
Eric / Darsus
Somewhere Over the Rainbow Bridge (Eric),
Norse by Norsevest (Eric),
My Fair Cupcake (Darsus),
Legend of the Seeker
Spartacus: Blood and Sand
Harry (in post-production)