I am a performance maker and collaborator based in South London, working in both Performing Arts and Participatory Arts sectors.
I have been a professional performance arts maker for the past 17 years, working mainly as Director and Dramaturg and also as Writer and Translator in Europe and the Middle East. For the past six years I have combined my work in the arts sector with a lifelong commitment to human rights activism, through participatory arts projects. I have an MA in Applied Theatre (awarded Distinction) from Goldsmiths University.
Collaboration is at the heart of what I do, and over the years I have worked with performers, writers, choreographers, musicians, poets, visual artists, rappers, circus artists and activists to create engaging works of live performance. In the participatory arts sector I have worked with refugees, adults experiencing homelessness, Roma communities, marginalised people, people accessing health and mental health services, young people not accessing work or education, and young people experiencing difficulty with speech, language and communication skills.
Since September 2015, I’ve been working in my capacity as National Touring Director for Raw Material, a youth arts charity based in Brixton, South London. Following the great success of the touring project Raw Roads: Invisible (Arts Council England funded) in 2015/2016, I created Raw Roads: Imagine, which toured England during 2017. For both rewarding projects, I was Artistic Director and Project Manager.
I have a particular interest in developing ‘open source’ models for creative arts projects that seek to benefit disadvantaged individuals and compromised communities. These models are designed to be ethical, professional, artistically ambitions and relevant to people’s lives.
2018 highlights included Radio Lukullus, the brain child of Julian M. Grünthal and myself, a new theatre piece commissioned by FRECH – die Freilichtspiele Chur, Switzerland, which was inspired by the production of an anti-war radio play by Bertolt Brecht and Grete Steffin in 1940. It featured a 20-strong mixed cast of professionals and community members, five interwoven paralel plots across eight locations, and enjoyed a wonderfully rewarding run.
June 2019: Hortensia Unlimited, a multimedia femmage to Swiss scholar Hortensia von Salis (1659-1715), which I directed, was extremely well received at its premier shows in Chur, Switzerland. The play, which I also co-wrote and dramaturged with Julian M. Grünthal (our fourth collaboration to date), is scheduled to continue its run through to May 2020. In the UK, following a successful run last September, we have launched a revised version of Maya Goldstein’s one woman show Za’atar Rain – a realistic fantasy about a girl, a pigeon, a sheep and the desire to cross enemy lines. The play is now touring the UK, with further dates continuously being added.
For my work in the arts sector, I have received a number of awards and grants over the years. These include:
Arts Grant for ‘Maiden Vengence’ from Theaterkommission des Präsidialdepartements der Stadt Zürich (Theatre Commission, City of Zurich)
Young Director Award for ‘What We Did to Weinstein’, Habima National Theatre Awards
Special Commendation for Artistic Courage for ‘Chocolate’, Haifa International Children’s Theatre Festival, 2006. (The production also won Best Actor, Best Musical Score, and Best Set Design awards)
Lottery Arts Fund Grant for ‘The Woolgatherer’
Outstanding Artist Grant from the IMIA, Culture Division
Ian Karten Scholarship for professional theatre training, London