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Shakespeare's Globe - Emma Rice appointed new Artistic Director

Theatre news

EMMA Rice has been appointed Shakespeare’s Globe’s new Artistic Director. In April 2016, she will take over from Dominic Dromgoole, who will complete the recently opened Summer season and one more Winter season in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, departing once the Globe to Globe Hamlet tour completes its two-year adventure next April.

Neil Constable, Chief Executive of Shakespeare’s Globe, said:

“I am thrilled to announce the appointment of Emma Rice as the third Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe. Emma has enjoyed exceptional success, both as the long-standing and inspirational joint Artistic Director of Kneehigh and as an independent director, producing and directing award-winning productions that are widely recognised to have an immediate connection with audiences and are seen all over the world.

“Her spirit and energy, her love of Shakespeare and her wholehearted and passionate response to the Globe’s architecture and audiences make her a worthy candidate in what has been a widely sought-after role. I have no doubt she will bring all these qualities to the Globe and build on the considerable achievements of Dominic Dromgoole. I can think of no one better placed to take on the Globe, and I look forward to working with her at what continues to be a particularly exciting time in the Globe’s history.”

Emma Stenning and Jenny Topper, Trustees and joint Chair of the Appointment Panel, said:

“We are delighted that Emma Rice is to be the next Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe. Throughout our search, we have been determined to appoint an artist of vision, someone who will approach the Globe’s continued exploration of Shakespeare and his contemporaries in performance with distinct clarity, who will sustain the tradition of presenting contemporary writers whose work will echo and reflect the world of Shakespeare, and who will be particularly inspired by the architecture of our two theatres.

“In Emma Rice, we have found that artist. She is a director at the top of her game, a theatre maker who revels in the presence of the audience, and one for whom the Globe is clearly a source of inspiration and passion. We can’t wait to see where her world-class theatrical imagination will take us next.”

Emma Rice said:

“I am delighted and honoured to be taking over the artistic direction of Shakespeare’s Globe. Open to the elements, and to its audience, this unique and important space demands theatre that brims with passion, joy and humanity. Mindful of the extraordinary artists I follow, I will take custody of this incredible organisation with an open heart, fierce passion and excited mind.”

Dominic Dromgoole, current Artistic Director, said:

“This is an excellent appointment, in keeping with the Globe’s traditions of boldness and adventure. Over many years, Emma has created at Kneehigh a body of work that shares the same principles of imagination, populism, wit and passion that have always been central to the Globe. Kneehigh have also pulled off the same happy trick of a fierce local attachment in Cornwall and a broad international reach, which is so important to the Globe, in Southwark and everywhere. I am sure that Emma will be a great complement to the Globe’s heterodox traditions, and also a major surprise.”

Emma Rice is currently the Joint Artistic Director of Kneehigh, for which she has adapted and directed The Red Shoes (TMA Theatre Award for Best Director), The Wooden Frock, The Bacchae (2005 TMA Theatre Award for Best Touring Production), Tristan & Yseult (currently touring the US), Cymbeline (in association with the Royal Shakespeare Company), A Matter of Life and Death (Royal National Theatre production in association with Kneehigh), Rapunzel (in association with Battersea Arts Centre), Brief Encounter (tour, West End and Studio 54, Broadway, a David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers Production in association with Kneehigh), Don John (in association with the Royal Shakespeare Company and Bristol Old Vic), Midnight’s Pumpkin, The Wild Bride and Steptoe and Son.

Her other work includes The Empress by Tanika Gupta for the RSC, the West End production of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Oedipussy for Spymonkey, Wah! Wah! Girls for World Stages (Sadler’s Wells, Theatre Royal Stratford East and Kneehigh), An Audience with Meow Meow (Berkeley Rep, California) and Rebecca (a David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers Production in association with Kneehigh), which is currently touring nationally.