Director Dominic Cooke has a wealth of experience in staging both classic and contemporary theatre, having worked at the RSC before an eight-year tenure as Artistic Director of new writing playhouse the Royal Court.Dominic talks of his surprise at being approached by Sam Mendes to bring four Shakespeares to the small screen in The Hollow Crown, why directing Shakespeare is a particular craft, and what a theatre director can bring to film.
Meera Syal is one of the UK's best-known performing arts polymaths, having turned her hand to acting, writing, singing and producing across both stage and screen. She is currently playing the role of Nurse in Kenneth Branagh's all-star Romeo and Juliet at The Garrick Theatre.In this interview, Meera explores the origins of her stage-adapted novel Anita and Me and reflects upon the joy of collaborative work and why it's important for a writer to invest in the small characters.
Theatr Clwyd's Artistic Director, Tamara Harvey has directed award-winning work in the West End, throughout the UK and abroad; she has tackled the classics, new writing, musical theatre and film.Tamara speaks to us about a director's sense of responsibility, how smaller venues engender a valuable intimacy between audience and performance, and why Theatr Clwyd is a place where the imagination can run riot.
Playwright and practitioner Timberlake Wertenbaker has penned work for renowned production houses including the Royal Court and the RSC over a career spanning half a century.Timberlake discusses writing internationally celebrated set text Our Country's Good, explores the craft of translation, and reveals the challenges of adapting Tolstoy's War and Peace.
Designer Colin Richmond discusses his work on set and costumes for Nikolai Foster's 2013 production of Jonathan Harvey's seminal play Beautiful Thing.Working with a different director on each job and creatively resolving how to use a small space are just some of the challenges Colin describes as key to the multifaceted and hugely varied life of a theatre designer.
Nicholas Shaw played Romeo in Timothy Sheader's first production at the Regent's Park Open Air Theatre in 2008.Nicholas explores the importance of Romeo's relationships and suggests that Romeo is so well-drawn because Shakespeare constantly develops him as a person throughout.
Sound engineer David Palmer spends his time in the theatre listening. His job is to tune into the sound of the show and ensure that the balance and amplification is perfect, and that the actors and musicians feel confident with their vocal tone and levels.
On Producing: David BabaniDavid Babani is the Artistic Director of London's Menier Chocolate Factory. Here he talks about creatively and administratively running a theatre, the risks and joys of producing shows and how crucial collaboration is to his role.
Scottish actor Alex Ferns played Lee in Phillip Breen's acclaimed production of Sam Shepard's True West. Ferns shares how his childhood experiences helped him identify with Lee¿́¿s wild behaviour and why observing coyotes enabled him to access the character's physicality on stage. Contains strong language.
Desmond Barrit has a long history with Shakespeare. Having tackled numerous roles including Bottom, Trinculo, Malvolio, and both Antipholi in a the same production, Desmond shares his experience treading the boards as some of the Bard's most renowned characters and explains his criteria for choosing the parts he plays.
Damian Humbley plays Charley Kringas, the let-down best friend and creative collaborator of Frank Shepard and Sondheim gives his character one of the best and most difficult songs in Merrily We Roll Along. Damian chats about creating Charley¿́¿s look and how he prepares for his performance on stage.
The long-suffering, warm-hearted Mary Flynn is a wonderfully rich part for a performer and Jenna Russell draws out all her complexity in the hit show Merrily We Roll Along. Jenna talks about how she approached the role and the challenge and joy of singing Sondheim.