Carl Bland trained at The Chelsea School of Art completing a BA (Hons) in Fine Art and also at The Central School of Speech and Drama in London.
He wrote and created his own theatre shows with Peta Rutter under the name Nightsong Productions. Their shows included The Bed Show, The House of Doors and Camels, Peta and Carl at the Last Supper and Sofa Stories. Collaborating with Theatre Stampede, they also made Head (2005 winner of Chapman Tripp Most Original Production) and 360 – a theatre of recollections for the 2010 New Zealand Festival. 360 won an inaugural excellence award and also The Hackman Cup, the people’s choice award for most original production, at the 2014 Auckland Theatre Awards. His play Te Pō premiered at The New Zealand Festival and The Auckland Arts Festival in 2016 winning an excellence award at the Auckland Theatre Awards. In 2017 he premiered Spirit House starring Ian Mune at the Herald Theatre and had a return season of Te Pō at Q theatre in Auckland. In 2017 he established the theatre company Nightsong with Ben Crowder. In 2019 his latest play Mr Red Light opened in Auckland before going on a nationwide tour. Mr Red Light also was part of the New Zealand Festival in 2020.
Carl has also been a finalist in the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards in the Picture Book section, and a winner of the best use of illustration in the Spectrum Book Awards. He was The Grimshaw Sargeson Fellow at Auckland University in 2018.