Spreadbury-Maher is appointed artistic director of the King’s Head

Natalie Woolman

Cock Tavern artistic director Adam Spreadbury-Maher has been appointed artistic director of the King’s Head Theatre, providing a link between the two north London fringe venues.

Spreadbury-Maher will continue as artistic director of both Good Night Out Presents and OperaUpClose and they will become resident producing companies at the King’s Head Theatre as well as the Cock Tavern when he takes up his position at the King’s Head later this year.

The King’s Head is to become a full-time producing venue under Spreadbury-Maher, as it was under founding artistic director Dan Crawford, who ran the theatre until his death in 2005. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the venue.

Crawford’s partner and King’s Head chief executive Stephanie Sinclaire said she thought Spreadbury-Maher was “extraordinary” and added: “I think he is quite unusual because his level of passion, commitment and vision are so strong and he’s got a very can-do attitude, which is really necessary at the King’s Head because every day is an act of fate to keep it going.”

Sinclaire said the plan was for Spreadbury-Maher to spend 90% of his time at the King’s Head and 10% at the Cock Tavern, which is “going to be kind of the King’s Head studio theatre”.

Spreadbury-Maher said: “It is an honour to carry on the legacy of the great theatrical pioneer, Dan Crawford, and I’ll seek to innovate, challenge and push theatre forward.”

Menier Chocolate Factory co-founder Danielle Tarento was taken on as co-artistic director with Sinclaire in 2008. She left last year to pursue freelance opportunities.

On Tarento, Sinclaire said: “[Tarento] was very good at helping to improve structures and she was excellent at casting and company management, so those were her strengths and that’s what she ended up doing.”

Spreadbury-Maher’s first season at the King’s Head will be this autumn. His production of Studies for a Portrait will run at the venue from March 30 to May 23.

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