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Directors outside London to be better supported in UK-wide ‘hubs’ scheme

Thomas Hescott. Photo: Robert Workman Stage Directors UK executive director Thomas Hescott. Photo: Robert Workman
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Industry body Stage Directors UK is piloting a series of ‘hubs’ outside the capital – based in Wales, Glasgow and Manchester – aimed at providing greater support for theatre directors in each area.

The hubs will be run by deps – established directors with connections to the areas they represent.

Acting as the face of SDUK, each dep will be on hand to answer questions or address concerns, which will in turn inform how SDUK is run.

SDUK Cymru is the first such hub to be established, and has formed a partnership with Wales Millennium Centre as part of the scheme.

Last year, an SDUK report found that Welsh directors were being underserved by the country’s theatres, warning that training and development was “inconsistent and patchy”.

Welsh theatre failing directors – report

The hubs in Glasgow and Manchester will launch later this year. SDUK hopes to roll out the initiative in further locations in the future.

SDUK executive director Thomas Hescott said: “At the end of 2017 I travelled around meeting directors across the UK. I met more than 100 directors in 10 different cities. From those initial meetings the idea of our hubs was formed.”

He added: “Allowing members in these areas to have more control and more of a voice in how their organisation is run is vital to us. Our deps are putting in place very ambitious plans and already forming strong partnerships with local theatres and arts centres.”

Mathilde Lopez has been named dep for Wales, with Gareth Nicholls, Nora Wardell and Emily Reutlinger in Glasgow and Benedict Power, Teunkie van der Sluijs and John Garfield-Roberts in Manchester.

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