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Christopher Haydon



Jonathan Kinnersley

Christopher Haydon is a theatre and film director. He is the current Artistic Director at the Rose Theatre, where he most recently directed LEOPARDS by Alys Metcalfe. His short film MARTHA was funded by the BFI and premiered at the LFF. Christopher is a 3-time winner of the Edinburgh Fringe First Award. He is also the author of THE ART OF THE ARTISTIC DIRECTOR, published in 2019 by Bloomsbury.

In 2019, Christopher directed TRYING IT ON by David Edgar at the Traverse. It previously toured the UK with China Plate Theatre, including performances at the RSC in Stratford and the Royal Court. His production of MACBETH with Lucy Ellinson in the title role opened at the Manchester Royal Exchange in September 2019.

In the same year the world premiere of Barney Norris’ new adaptation of Kazuo Ishiguro’s THE REMAINS OF THE DAY played at Northampton Royal & Derngate, before heading out on a UK tour:

★★★★ “Christopher Haydon’s production…gives us well-orchestrated, cerebral theatre.” The Guardian (read the full review )

★★★★ “Haydon…exploit(s) the possibilities for fascinating juxtapositions and revelatory contrasts […] It’s a brilliantly paced, impeccably performed piece of theatre.” Whats on Stage (read the full review) 

★★★★  “The challenge, for […] director Christopher Haydon, was to make the story, which takes place almost completely in Stevens’s head, before and after the war, coherent. It does succeed and I came to enjoy the abrupt time changes from pre to postwar, often signalled by something as small as someone putting on a hat.” The Times (read the full review)

★★★★  “Christopher Haydon’s direction sees the cast moving around the stage like the well-oiled machine that an English country house was meant to be” Broadway World (read the full review)

★★★★ “Christopher Haydon’s production is elegant and fluid” The Sunday Express 

★★★★ “an effective and affecting production” The Sunday Times Culture Magazine (read the full review)

★★★★ “self-effacingly directed by Christopher Haydon – makes this a a sharper critique of the price of servitude. […] a really pleasurable return to a terrific book.” The Mail on Sunday 

Christopher’s first independent short film, IN WONDERLAND, won the award for Best Drama at the Aesthetica Short Film Festival. It’s been funded by Film London and Southern Exposure Film Fund, and stars Louise Brealey and Arthur Darvill. Christopher also produced PASSAGES: A WINDRUSH CELEBRATION, which comprises of seven films for seven decades, shown at the Royal Court. He has previously made a number of micro films: Devil in the Detail (Royal Court Theatre/Guardian), Taming of the Shrew, Two Gentlemen of Verona (Globe Theatre/BBC).

His European premiere production of ON THE EXHALE by Martin Zimmerman won a Fringe First for its run at the Traverse during the Edinburgh Festival.

Christopher was formerly Artistic Director at the Gate Theatre, where his credits include: DIARY OF A MADMAN (also Traverse Theatre), THE IPHIGENIA QUARTET, THE CHRISTIANS (also Traverse Theatre, winner: Fringe First), GROUNDED (Traverse Theatre, Studio Theatre Washington DC, national and international tour; winner: Fringe First, Best Production – Off West End Awards) IMAGE OF AN UNKNOWN YOUNG WOMAN (winner: Best Production, Off West End Awards), THE EDGE OF OUR BODIES, TROJAN WOMEN, PURPLE HEART, THE PROPHET, WITTENBURG.

His other theatre credits include TWELVE ANGRY MEN (Birmingham Rep/West End/national tour), SIXTY-SIX BOOKS, IN THE BEGINNING (Bush Theatre/Westminster Abbey); A SAFE HARBOUR FOR ELIZABETH BISHOP (Southbank Centre); GRACE, PRESSURE DROP (On Theatre); DEEP CUT (Sherman Cymru/National Tour); MONSTERS, NOTES FROM UNDERGROUND (Arcola); A NUMBER (Salisbury Playhouse). Short Films include: THE TAMING OF THE SHREW/TWO GENTLEMAN OF VERONA (Globe Theatre) DEVIL IN THE DETAIL (Royal Court/Guardian). As a journalist he has written for: The Scotsman, The Financial Times, The Independent, The Guardian, The New Statesman, The Stage and Prospect Magazine. He is the co-editor of three books: Conversations on Religion, Conversations on Truth (Continuum) and Identity and Identification (Black Dog).

Christopher is formerly an Associate Director at the Bush Theatre.

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