theatre nomad 1993 – 2011
For twenty years theatre nomad brought together theatre makers from around the world working in a variety of theatrical traditions to reinterpret classic texts and create new theatre for new audiences and new situations. Started by Luke Dixon and Liz Turner in 1993, the company was originally known as The Soho Group, but as we wandered ever further around the world, picking up new members on our travels, theatre nomad seemed the more appropriate name.
The company’s work was characterised by interests in gender, multi-culturalism, and making theatre in unconventional spaces. Productions included ground-breaking all-female stagings of Macbeth and Hamlet, an exploration of the queer in Shakespeare with Shakesqueer, and a site-specific Uncle Vanya set in the music room of an English country house.
The nomads toured the globe – from South Wales to Siberia, Canada to the Cape of Africa, China to the Balkans. The company performed in the Shakespeare Gardens in Paris, high up in the Bavarian Alps, in a ruined church as part of the International Shakespeare Festival in Gdansk, at The Hong Kong City Festival and across South Africa. Productions were seen by more than 45,000 people in more than 150 different venues in 14 countries.
Nine thousand people took part in theatre nomad’s educational workshops run as part of the company’s commitment to the exploration of performance and the social use of drama. The company ran workshops on Shakespeare in the townships of South Africa, on trance performance in England, on the acting of gender in North America and on text and theatre skills in schools and colleges across Europe. The nomads also used drama to deal with a wide range of social issues including war and bereavement in Kosovo, youth alienation in North America and conflict reconciliation in Southern Africa.