I develop and create theatre.
Founding Artistic Director of The Factory, and Artistic Director of Night Club.
if you cut public investment in theatre, then sooner or later there will be no commercial theatre either. Without talent and ideas nurtured in the subsidised sector, the West End will starve to death. The subsidised theatre is a pyramid of expertise and training, and the West End benefits from that just as private doctors benefit from being trained on the NHS. The difference is that in this country, all theatre professionals move freely between commercial and subsidised sectors. That cross-fertilisation is unique and fecund.
This country doesn’t manufacture much any more, but theatre-making is one activity where we can and do lift trophies. So why aren’t we more proud of this profitable industry? Why is there no coherent UK arts policy? Why has our Prime Minister, to my knowledge, not once mentioned the arts since he came to power? Subsidy is the lifeblood of the British theatre. As Tom Morris told me after his win, “It ain’t about the Tonys, it’s about backing people at the start of the journey, when no one’s heard of them and the idea doesn’t yet hold water.” No-one knows from where the next War Horse or Jerusalem will come, but it’ll come from somewhere. Except that, one day, maybe it won’t.”