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RTST and Nuffield Southampton Theatres launch RTST Director Award 2017

Wed 1 March, 2017

RTST and Nuffield Southampton Theatres launch RTST Director Award 2017

The Royal Theatrical Support Trust (RTST) and Nuffield Southampton Theatres (NST) are delighted to announce that the 2017 RTST Director Award Scheme is now open for entries.

The winner of the RTST Director Award 2017 will get the unique opportunity to direct a full-scale, fully-funded production of a classic play, to be co-produced by Nuffield Southampton Theatres, English Touring Theatre (ETT) and Theatr Clwyd in 2018.  Candidates are invited to pitch their vision for a bold, radical re-working of a classic British or European play in response to contemporary issues, particularly those relating to our national identity. The winner’s production will première in the main house of NST’s new city centre theatre, NST City and play for three weeks in the Anthony Hopkins Theatre at Theatr Clwyd.  Between these dates, the production will tour the main houses of theatres across the UK.

The RTST Director Award 2017 will be awarded to an up-and-coming director for demonstration of exceptional directorial skills in a rigorous competitive process.  Short-listed candidates will be invited to workshops to demonstrate their directorial skills, before a final interview stage.

The winning director will be chosen by a selection panel comprising: chair Samuel Hodges (Director of Nuffield Southampton Theatres); Sir Derek Jacobi; Patricia Hodge; Danny Lee Wynter; Tamara Harvey (Artistic Director of Theatr Clwyd); and Richard Twyman (Artistic Director of English Touring Theatre).

The RTST will make a grant of £50,000 to NST to be applied towards the costs of the winner’s production.

The 2017 scheme supports the RTST mission as a charity dedicated to promoting theatre and drama. Chairman of the RTST, Sir Geoffrey Cass, said: The RTST Director Award reflects the mission of the RTST to support British theatre in multiple ways.  It will boost the career of an up-and-coming director; provide significant financial and promotional support for regional theatres; and facilitate a production by a classic dramatist for regional audiences.  We are delighted to be collaborating this year with NST and their dynamic Director, Samuel Hodges. The 2017 RTST Award winner will have the thrill and satisfaction of seeing his or her work on the stages of NST, Theatr Clwyd, and touring venues of ETT.  Last year we had 97 entries for the 2016 Award. This year, the prize for the winner is even more exciting.’

Samuel Hodges, Director at Nuffield Southampton Theatres, said: ‘We are a director and designer’s theatre, first and foremost, thus we were delighted to be approached by the Royal Theatrical Support Trust as partners on this year’s important director’s opportunity. With the UK more segregated than ever before, this is a critical time to call the next generation of directors to boldly engage with our current state of the nation. We want the production to play to the width and breadth of the British Isles – and Theatr Clywd and English Touring Theatre are the perfect partners to help us realise that ambition.’

Entries for the RTST Director Award Scheme 2017 are now open. To enter, and for further details of the award, please visit the RTST’s website: www.rtst.org.uk. The closing date for entries is 18.00 on 20 March 2017.

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