Rhum+Clay

About

“It is testament to their influence among the next generation of theatremakers that they are regularly named as being an inspiration by graduating companies making new work”
DAVID BYRNE, ARTISTIC & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF NEW DIORAMA THEATRE

Rhum + Clay is an award-winning theatre company led by co-Artistic Directors, Julian Spooner and Matt Wells and Executive Producer, Sally Cowling. 

Rhum + Clay began with friendship. Founding members Chris, Julian and Kris decided to form a company and, one anarchic show later, a name change, the addition of Matt and away we went! We rehearsed our first shows in various parks and bandstands. We’ve since graduated from parks to theatres, to bigger theatres, to theatres in other countries. What hasn’t changed is our desire to make work that ignites the audience’s imagination. There are also some spectacularly talented people who now work with us...

Everything that Rhum + Clay produces is developed collaboratively; from set designers to writers, performers and sound artists, everyone is together from day one to offer opinions and build the show together. 

Off-stage, our education programme is an extension of that creative process, celebrating the unique skills of each participant whilst giving them tools to create better theatre, collaboratively. Our hope is that many of the workshop participants will become future collaborators.

We are Artistic Associates of New Diorama Theatre and Redbridge Drama Centre who have supported and challenged us creatively and practically and over the long-term. We’ve also been supported by Arts Council England since 2012. We couldn't have done it without any of them and we are enormously grateful.

“It is testament to their influence among the next generation of theatremakers that they are regularly named as being an inspiration by graduating companies making new work”
DAVID BYRNE, ARTISTIC & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF NEW DIORAMA THEATRE

THE TEAM

Co-Artistic Director - Julian Spooner

Julian is a multi-award winning actor, director, writer, and co-Artistic Director of Rhum + Clay. He studied Drama at the University of Bristol before training for two years at Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris where he co-founded Rhum + Clay.

Julian has co-created all of their productions. Most recently he has co-directed Rhum + Clay’s critically-acclaimed production, 64 SQUARES, directed the multi-award winning, TESTOSTERONE and performed in the company’s version of Dario Fo’s MISTERO BUFFO for which he won the Stage Award for Acting Excellence.  In 2019 he co-directed THE WAR OF THE WORLDS, which will embark on a mid-scale tour of the UK and the US in 2021. Julian is also a keen filmmaker, having co-created the award-winning comedy short film, Toby (2018), and is currently developing a feature film screenplay. He’s also an Artistic Associate of Hoipolloi, and devised The Ladder with Shôn Dale-Jones and Stefanie Mueller in 2019.

Co-Artistic Director - Matt Wells

Matt is an actor, movement teacher and co-Artistic Director of Rhum + Clay. He studied Performance at the University of Western Sydney before training for two years at Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris where he first joined the company. 

Since 2010 he has been the co-Artistic Director of Rhum + Clay, co-creating all of the company’s productions. He co-directed  and provided movement direction for the critically-acclaimed 64 SQUARES and was Movement Director for TESTOSTERONE and THE WAR OF THE WORLDS. 

Matt is also passionate about teaching, having created and led workshops all over the world, most recently in Kazakhstan, Canada, Brazil, Venezuela and Australia. Since 2004 Matt has choreographed work for Australia’s farthest-reaching touring theatre company, Brainstorm, a company that performs to over 350,000 young people each year.

Executive Producer - Sally Cowling

Sally is a producer and programmer and Executive Producer for Rhum + Clay. As well as her work with Rhum + Clay, she is Artistic Associate and International Programmer for Brighton Dome and Festival, curating the international performance programme and producing the Festival’s commissioned work. She is  also  International Associate at Wiltshire Creative and a producer of large-scale productions for other companies, including One Extraordinary Day, a suite of spectacular aerial dance performances by the Streb company, taking place on and around iconic London buildings, as part of the London 2012 Festival and the LIFT/Barbican production and UK tour of Russian director Dmitry Krymov’s magnificent Opus no 7

Until 2010 Sally was the Director of Drama and Dance at the British Council, creating and managing over 300 theatre and dance events around the world each year, including the Council’s biennial Edinburgh Showcase, which she originally designed and established. Working particularly extensively in Central and Eastern Europe, Greece, China and North America, Sally has worked as a dramaturg, theatre critic, arts funder and as a theatre, dance and live art producer internationally, as well as in Britain. She sits on a number of advisory and award panels, including as an advisor for National Theatre of Scotland.

General Manager - Grace Dickson

Grace is a freelance producer & General Manager for Rhum + Clay. She has an MA in Creative Producing from Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, where she now teaches, before which she studied Mathematics at the University of Edinburgh.

Grace is also Assistant Producer to Ellie Claughton, with whom she works for Breach Theatre (It’s True, It’s True, It’s True, Joan of Leeds), LUNG (Trojan Horse, Who Cares) and Barrel Organ (CONSPIRACY). Grace worked as Production Coordinator for LIVE General Management and is the Administrator for Burn Bright. Grace is Company Producer for Grace Dickson Productions, Lagahoo Productions (NDT Emerging Company, Soho Theatre Young Company) and THESE GIRLS (Pleasance Charlie Hartill Reserve Recipient).  She is Trainee Trustee at Theatre Deli, Accounts Assistant to Mark Cartwright, and has previously worked with Improbable, Target Live, Global Musicals, Premier Comms PR and Something for the Weekend.

Producing credits include: SPLINTERED (Lagahoo Productions; Vault Festival 2020, Edinburgh Fringe 2019; OffWestEnd Award-nominated), Bible John (THESE GIRLS; Vault Festival 2020, Edinburgh Fringe 2019; Pleasance Charlie Hartill Reserve Recipient), An Act of Care (archipelago; Push Festival 2020), Catching Comets (Ransack Theatre; as Associate Producer; Royal Exchange Theatre & The Pleasance 2020) and We Three (Short film; nominated for Royal Television Society Short Film Drama Award).

Rhum

Intoxicating alcoholic liquor. Best experienced in the form of a 3-Euro bottle from the supermarket.

Clay

The stuff of life. To be stretched, kicked and pulled into absolutely anything.

Rhum + Clay

Embracing the magical, the comical and the surreal, but getting down in the earth and the dirt where the real stories are found.

COLLABORATORS

LUCY ADAMS   Technician; TWOTW
YNGVILD ASPELI   Devising Performer; The Sleeper  
EMILY BATES   Costume Designer; Mistero Buffo  
JESS BERNBERG   Lighting Designer; Man in the Moone
ALEX BRENNER   Photographer; A Strange Wild Song
JOLIE BOOTH   Producer; Testosterone 
DAN CANHAM   Choreographer; Sons and Lovers
GREG CEBULA   Lighting Designer; A Strange Wild Song
JASMIN COLE   Stage Manager; Mistero Buffo 
EMMA DARLOW   Deviser; Electronica
ROB DARCH    Photographer; A Strange Wild Song, Shutterland
WILLIAM DONALDSON   Actor; Testosterone 
SANDRA DEICKMANN   Illustrator; The Man In the Moone, Strange Wild Song
LAURENCE T DOYLE   Technician; Hardboiled, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde 
CHARLOTTE DUBERRY   Deviser/Performer; 64 Squares 
KATE EDWARDS   Devising Performer; The Sleeper  
JANET ETUK   Deviser; Electronica 
BETH FLINTOFF   Writer/Director; Hardboiled, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde  
NICK FLINTOFF   Lighting Designer; Hardboiled, TWOTW
LUKE FORSYTH   Photographer; Testosterone, Mistero Buffo  
MONA GOODWIN    Devising Performer; TWOTW
BEN GRANT   Sound Designer; TWOTW, Electronica
HAYLEY GRINDLE   Set Designer; Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde 
GREG HALL   Devising Performer; The Sleeper  
AMELIA JANE HANKIN   Set Designer; 64 Squares 
DAVID HARRIS   Set Designer; Hardboiled 
CHRISTOPHER HARRISSON   
Deviser/Performer/Writer/Director; every show up to 64 Squares 
GEOFF HENSE   Lighting Designer; 64 Squares, Testosterone 
KIRSTY HOUSLEY   Deviser/Director; Electronica 
DOMINIC JEFFERY   Devising Performer; The Sleeper  
ALBERTA JONES   Designer; Testosterone, A Strange Wild Song
JESS MABEL JONES   Deviser/Performer; Hardboiled, TWOTW
SEAN JONES   Performer; Shutterland 
AELLA JORDAN-EDGE   Technician; A Strange Wild Song
EMILY KREIDER   Devising Performer; The Sleeper  
STEPHEN LAUGHTON   Writer, Giants
TRINI LEÓN   Technician; 64 Squares, Testosterone  
ISLEY LYNN   Writer; TWOTW
EMMA MARTIN   Marketing Consultant; TWOTW
PETE MAXEY   Lighting Designer; TWOTW
FRED MCCLAREN   Musician; 64 Squares 
HAMISH MCDOUGALL   Director; TWOTW
TOM MORTON-SMITH   Writer; Electronica 
PURNI MORRELL   Director; Electronica 
ROISIN O'MAHONY   Performer; 64 squares 
JOHN OUIN   Musician; Mistero Buffo
NICHOLAS PITT   Director; Mistero Buffo
REBECCA PITT   Poster Designer; TWOTW
SACHA PLAIGE   Deviser; 64 Squares 
SARAH JULIE PUJOL   Technician; A Strange Wild Song
RACHEL PRYCE   Stage Manager; Mistero Buffo
KIT REDSTONE   Devisor/Performer/Writer; Testosterone 
DOUGLAS RINTOUL  Associate Director; Testosterone
RHYS ROBINSON   Photographer; Man in the Moone
GUY J SANDERS   Designer; R&C Website, TWOTW
NEIL STARKE   Production Manager; TWOTW & Sound Designer; Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde, Harboiled
SORCHA MAE STOTT-STRZALA   Technician; 64 Squares
VINEGAR STROKES (Daniel Jacob)   Deviser/Performer; Testosterone 
HANNAH TOOKEY   Producer; TWOTW, Mistero Buffo
PHILLIP TULL   Photographer; Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde 
AMALIA VITALE   Deviser/Performer; TWOTW 
PETER WEIDMANN   Performer; A Strange Wild Song
BETHANY WELLS   Designer; Electronica, TWOTW
DANIEL WILCOX   Deviser/Performer; A Strange Wild Song, Man in the Moone 
ELIZA WILLS-CRISP   Devising Performer; The Sleeper  
SARAH WILSON-WHITE   Producer 
LAILA WOOZEER   Musician; A Strange Wild Song
PAUL WHEELER   Film Editor; From I to We

THE BOARD

ANTHONY ALDERSON

Anthony is Director of The Pleasance Theatre Trust.  Formerly he worked as Associate Producer for Glynis Henderson Productions on STOMP and Ennio Marchetto and as Production Manager with Cheek by Jowl.  Anthony has ‘made the odd film, produced the odd show and spent eight years travelling around the place’.

NADIA NEISTEROWICZ-NEWSTEAD

Nadia is currently Communications Manager at The Clore Leadership Programme. She has previously worked for The Albany, Deptford; house (Farnham Maltings); Soho Theatre and The Marlowe, Canterbury, as well as developing and running marketing workshops. Clients have included Norfolk and Norwich Festival, Theatre Royal Portsmouth, NSDF and the University of Surrey.

SOPHIE WALLIS

Sophie is currently Executive Producer at New Diorama Theatre. Sophie has run New Diorama alongside David Byrne, Artistic & Executive Director, since it opened in 2010. With extensive experience in running venues and events, Sophie now works part-time as a new mum and is responsible for managing organisational and project budgets and cash flow, alongside producing all in-house productions.

SARAH WILSON-WHITE

Sarah is an arts producer with a passion for contemporary performance, regional touring and artist development. Presently she is Senior Producer for Fuel and Course Associate on the Creative Producing MA at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. Sarah is also a trustee of New Diorama Theatre and a Clore Emerging Leaders Alumnus.

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