18-Month Residency2018-10-02T13:46:08+00:00

18-Month Residency

For a building-based theatre company to benefit from hosting an emerging director for 18 months. The director will assist on productions, learn about the operations of the theatre and direct at least one professional production.

Daniel Bailey directing a group

Applications are now closed for theatres to host an 18-Month Resident. We will be announcing the successful host theatres in late November 2018 when there will be a open call-out for directors to apply – check back for details!

“RTYDS is where it really all began; it made me the director and artistic director I am today.”
Natalie Ibu (Artistic Director, Tiata Fahodzi)


We recruit the most talented emerging directors in the country and place them in theatres that will give them extraordinary opportunities. Regional theatre companies apply to RTYDS to host the 18-Month Residencies. Directors develop skills, learn how to run a theatre and will direct their own show. RTYDS creates pathways for directors to develop not only their craft but also as future artistic leaders.

Information for Theatre Companies

This is an opportunity for a building-based theatre company to benefit from having an emerging director spend 18 months working with you and developing their craft as a director, learning about the operations of the building and addressing issues of cultural leadership.

RTYDS selects up to four theatre companies to take part in this scheme and works with the artistic
directors of the selected theatres to choose four young directors from a pool of some of the brightest new talents in the UK.

Funding: a sum of £34,000 is offered to the 18- Month Resident which covers the entire 18-month period and is inclusive of any on-costs.

The residency is for talented directors with not less than 18 months’ professional experience and demonstrable commitment to a career as a director. (Vocational experience as part of an accredited training course at MA level will count as professional experience.) They will have an interest in regional theatre and developing audiences. As well as directing, they will be interested in the artistic and operational running of a building, cultural leadership and the wider role of the artistic director.

For the director, the 18-Month Residency is a chance to progress both their practice and artistic evolution, and be a catalyst for a step change in their development.

There is no upper age limit but the director must be over 18 years old.

This residency opportunity is aimed at professional building-based producing theatre companies in England (outside London), with a practicing artistic director, a track record of education and outreach work and of artist development. Mid-scale touring or peripatetic producing companies may be considered in exceptional circumstances and they can apply as a consortium partner or in partnership with a building-based theatre.

You can apply for more than one of our programmes at the same time. If you do so, you need to make clear how the strands would complement and support each other and demonstrate that you have the capacity to support more than one initiative.

The Artistic Director is required to take an active part in the selection process of candidates alongside the RTYDS. They will be required to consider up to 100 long listed applications and select and interview a shortlist of 20 directors in a two-stage interview process. We expect that the successful participant will be mentored by the Artistic Director and gain a wide range of experience including assistant directing on productions, programming, script reading and artist development. They will be given experience in all the theatre’s departments and learn about finance, development, producing, press and marketing.

The residency will start within six months of your successful application and the participant must be offered a professional production as part of the residency. The production should involve professional actors and a full creative team.

Your application with be assessed on the basis of:

  • The quality of the proposal
  • The benefit to the emerging directors
  • The commitment and experience of the company

In each round we will aim for a geographical spread of theatres and a mix of smaller and larger companies.

Decisions will be made by the board of RTYDS, individual board members are not involved in considering applications from theatres to which they are personally connected.

Applications for theatres to apply for an RTYDS 18 Month Residency in 2019/20 are currently open.

Please download an Application Pack

Once your application has been received we may be in touch for an initial discussion to talk through your application.

The deadline is 12.00 midday on Monday 1st October 2018. Once you have submitted your application you will hear within a month of the deadline if it has been successful.
If you would like to have a chat before submitting your application please contact Davinia Jokhi, Project Producer, or ring 0161 883 0296.

All participants must be resident in the UK.

Information for Directors

This is an opportunity for a talented emerging theatre director (over 18) with no less than 18 months professional experience to undertake high quality work-based training at one of England’s leading middle-scale producing theatre companies. Resident directors are also offered a production at the theatre in which they are undertaking their training.

RTYDS selects up to four theatre companies to take part in this scheme and works with the artistic directors of the selected theatres to choose directors from a pool of some of the brightest new talents in the UK.

You should have a demonstrable commitment to a professional career as a director and you should have an interest in regional theatre and developing audiences. As well as directing, you should be interested in the artistic and operational running of a theatre building, cultural leadership and the wider role of the artistic director.

You will be mentored by the Artistic Director and gain a wide range of experience including assisting directors on productions, as well as programming, script reading and artist development. You will be given experience in all the theatre’s functions and learn about finance, development, producing, press and marketing, administration etc. As part of the opportunity to make work you might direct rehearsed readings, research and development projects, young people’s work and crucially you will direct a production within the theatre’s programme.

The scheme is open to any professional director who is resident in the UK and has at least 18 months to two years’ professional experience and can demonstrate a commitment to professional theatre directing. (Vocational experience as part of an accredited training course at MA level can count as professional experience.) There is no upper age limit for the scheme, but directors should be over 18 and in the early stages of their career. You must be willing to go to any of the participating theatres and embrace their local community.

If you are unable to relocate due to caring responsibilities or access requirements, please let us know when you apply.

All applicants must be resident in the UK at point of application.

If you are unsure if you are eligible to apply please contact Davinia Jokhi, Project Producer, or ring 0161 883 0296.

The theatres hosting the 18-Month Residencies for 20118/19 will be announced here on 26 November 2018.

Our other programmes

Current 18-Month Residencies

  • Portrait of Madeleine Kludje

    Madeleine Kludje at Birmingham Repertory Theatre

    About Madeleine Kludje

    Madeleine Kludje trained at the Brit School of the Performing Arts and has a background in performing, devising, facilitating and directing. Madeleine is currently directing a devised piece for the new entrance opening of the Victoria and Albert Museum with young people from Emergency Exit Arts and has recently finished directing Check The Label by Eno Mfon for Talawa First and Fable, a new piece written by Luke Barnes in response to A Man of Good Hope that saw Madeleine directing young people in London, New York and Cape Town.

    Madeleine has also assisted on numerous projects at the Young Vic including, the Boris Karloff trainee assistant programme for the devised piece called The Web directed by Ria Parry and the full scale parallel production of The Scottsboro Boys with the Young Vic’s under 18 participants directed by Natasha Nixon as well as assisting Dawn Reid on Little Red Riding Hood at Theatre Royal Stratford East. In addition Madeleine is also a drama facilitator working predominantly with Talawa Theatre Company, Young Vic, Old Vic and EEA.

  • Portrait of Nicola Miles-Wildin

    Nicola Miles-Wildin at Manchester Royal Exchange

    About Nicola Miles-Wildin

    Nicola Miles-Wildin’s directing credits include: Bingo Lingo (co-director/Wild N Beets), Disability Sex Archives, Two Can Toucan (TwoCan Theatre), Nana’s Jumble (Kazzum). Staff Director on Mosquitoes (Dorfman, National Theatre). Associate Director on Tommy (Ramps On The Moon National Tour). Assistant Director credits: The House of Bernarda Alba (Graeae/Manchester Royal Exchange), Lost and Found (GDance), Blood Wedding (Graeae/Dundee Rep/Derby Theatre), Waiting Game (Kazzum), Wheels on Broadway (Graeae). Nicola is an Associate Artist for Kazzum and GDance.

    In 2014 Nicola co-founded TwoCan, Gloucestershire’s first professional disabled-led theatre company. Nicola is thrilled to be at Manchester Royal Exchange as Resident Assistant Director – such an amazing vibrant venue to be part of.

  • Portrait of Taio Lawson

    Taio Lawson at Sheffield Theatres

    About Taio Lawson

    Taio Lawson was born and raised in South London. After co-founding Metal Mouth Theatre as a teenager and making shows in fringe venues in the South of England and internationally, Taio was the Boris Karloff Trainee Assistant Director and Jerwood Assistant Director at the Young Vic (Sizwe Banzi is Dead, Life of Galileo), and a Resident Director at the Almeida Theatre, (assisting on They Drink it in the Congo and Oil). He has directed plays and rehearsed-readings at the Cockpit, Rhoda Mcgaw Theatre and Bush Theatre.

Our success stories

What participants say about the scheme

Matthew Xia Associate Artistic Director at Manchester Royal Exchange:
“I can honestly say I don’t think I would have been eligible for this position without the time spent getting to understand the region [as part of RTYDS], ‘regional’ theatres in general and the role they serve in their locale. This placement has completely reframed my understanding of the necessity of theatre and the people it is for. It’s given me such a rich experience of what it takes to make theatre for specific buildings and audiences and also what it takes to run and programme those buildings.”

Jo Newman, Resident Assistant Director Salisbury Playhouse (now Wiltshire Creative) 2014-2016:
“Being part of the Regional Theatre Young Directors’ Scheme is such a valuable opportunity and I can quite honestly say that it has changed my life. After the first six months I have learnt so much and have been involved in activities ranging from artistic programming to community projects, have had the opportunity to work as an assistant director and work alongside some of the industry’s leading creatives in addition to having the space and time to develop my own practice as a director. Regional theatre is really important to me and it is fantastic to be part of the life of such a brilliant venue and work with Gareth Machin, artistic director, to gain an insight into how it is run.”

18-Month Residency participants

  • Portrait of Julia Thomas

    Julia Thomas at Curve Theatre, Leicester

    About Julia

    Julia Thomas is from Llanelli and was resident director at the National Theatre Studio in partnership with National Theatre Wales earlier this year. For National Theatre Wales Julia has been Emerging Director on A Provincial Life and Assistant Director on Iliad.  Julia has directed at various Welsh theatres including Blue/Orange at Sherman Theatre and Fun Palaces at Wales Millennium Centre.

  • Portrait of Lekan Lawal

    Lekan Lawal at Derby Theatre

    About Lekan

    Lekan Lawal is from London and trained at LAMDA. He recently worked as an associate for The Big House and is currently working on Measure for Measure at the Young Vic.

  • Portrait of Ben Occhipinti

    Ben Occhipinti at Octagon Theatre, Bolton

    About Ben

    Ben Occhipinti is from Wiltshire and worked with Salisbury Playhouse on several productions including Spread a Little Happiness and Jack and the Beanstalk, he has a passion for music theatre and opera and recently directed La Rondine with Iford Opera.

  • Portrait of Daniel Bailey

    Daniel Bailey at Birmingham Repertory Theatre

    About Daniel

    Daniel Bailey took part in the Young Vic’s Introduction to Directing and went on to be Director in Residence at the National Theatre Studio. He has developed work with theatre companies including Talawa, Paddington Arts and the New Vic Theatre.

  • Photo of Rebecca Frecknall

    Rebecca Frecknall at Northern Stage (recipient of the Christopher Whelen bursary)

    About Rebecca

    Rebecca Frecknall was recipient of the National Theatre Studio’s Resident Director Bursary and was awarded one of the Jerwood Assistant Director Bursaries at the Young Vic. She has directed work at Southwark Playhouse, Greenwich Theatre and the New Diorama.

  • Photo of Jesse Jones

    Jesse Jones at Royal & Derngate, Northampton

    About Jesse

    Jesse Jones is the Co-Artistic Director of The Wardrobe Theatre in Bristol which he founded in 2011. In 2013 Jesse was Assistant Director to Bijan Sheibani on the National Theatre’s production of Emil and the Detectives.

  • Photo of Jo Newman

    Jo Newman at Salisbury Playhouse (now Wiltshire Creative)

    About Jo

    Jo Newman is Co-Artistic Director of Birmingham based Tin Box Theatre Company and has developed work at theatres including Birmingham REP, mac, Battersea Arts Centre and New Diorama Theatre. Jo was a member of the REP Foundry, Birmingham REP’s Artists Development programme.

“The value and cultural importance of the scheme cannot be underestimated. The opportunity to be immersed in all areas of the theatre business and creation of work is unrivalled. There is no doubt in my mind that, without this extraordinary chance, I would not have had the experience or confidence to the director I am.”

Vicky Featherstone
Artistic Director, Royal Court Theatre

18-Month residencies have been hosted in partnership with: