Watermill Theatre New Associate Artists Include Barney Norris, Caroline Sheen, andSarah Travis

Watermill Theatre New Associate Artists Include Barney Norris, Caroline Sheen, andSarah TravisPaul Hart, Artistic Director of The Watermill Theatre, has announced that Sarah Travis, Caroline Sheen, Barney Norris, Tom Jackson Greaves, Tarek Merchant, Katie Lias and Sophie Stone will join the West Berkshire producing theatre as Associate Artists.

Hart says, 'I'm delighted to welcome our new Associates to The Watermill team. The expertise, experience, talent and enthusiasm they bring is invaluable. Their relationship with The Watermill and support of our ethos makes them perfect advocates for the theatre.'

Orchestrator and composer Sarah Travis, who is co-orchestrator and musical supervisor for Sweet Charity which currently runs at the theatre, commented:

'The Watermill holds a special place in my heart. It's where one can be creative, reinvent, take risks, play, let the imagination run wild, form wonderful ensembles, and create exciting work.'

Caroline Sheen, who has performed at The Watermill in Crazy For You and Under Milk Wood said:

'The jobs I have had at The Watermill have been some of the most joyous times of my career. I'm thrilled and honoured to become an Associate Artist at this enchanting and exciting venue.'

Playwright and author, Barney Norris, whose plays include Visitors and Eventide, and novels include Turning For Home, commented: 'The Watermill is an inspiring place, and I hope to find ways of telling the stories I care about by spending time there. I hope I'll be able to help others do the same as well.'

Tom Jackson Greaves, choreographer and director, most recently choreographed The Watermill's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream and Sweet Charity. He said:

'Over the past few years I have been very proud to collaborate regularly with The Watermill - using movement and dance to invigorate the stories we tell and excite the audiences we welcome. The Watermill's vibrancy is infectious.'

Composer, musical director and performer Tarek Merchant made his professional debut at The Watermill Theatre in Sunset Boulevard. He has returned to work at the theatre many times. He commented:

'I have been very fortunate to see the gorgeous, intimate performance space continue to occupy a pre-eminent position in the development of actor-musicianship. My particular passion is the integration of live music in theatre performance, so I feel that I very much share The Watermill's unique ethos.'

Katie Lias has designed several Watermill productions including Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet and Journey's End said: 'It is thanks to the dedication of The Watermill team as a whole that this beautiful theatre is able to bring such varied and provoking work of consistently high quality to its audiences and I feel very fortunate to be a part of that.'

Sophie Stone was a member of The Watermill's Young Company and recently returned to play Hermia in A Midsummer Night's Dream. She commented: 'The Watermill has been a part of my life since my first foray onto the stage. The youth group helped shaped me into the actor I was to become, had faith in my abilities and challenged me in ways theatre should in order to grow. Being an Associate Artist is the perfect way to continue my relationship.'

The new Associate Artists join George Stiles, Anthony Drewe, Rosalie Craig, Johnny Flynn and Tom Attenborough who became Watermill Associate Artists in 2016.

In keeping with the theatre's supportive and nurturing ethos, The Watermill have made Wildcard Theatre an Associate Company, giving them access to the theatre's resources and artistic support. Co-artistic director James Meteyard says:

'Without The Watermill's support we wouldn't have been able to create our latest production, Electrolyte, a piece of gig-theatre exploring mental health premiering at The Pleasance, Edinburgh Fringe, as the complexities of the form and the size of the piece would have made it too difficult, logistically and financially. The Watermill team is helping us to achieve our aim of transitioning from a fringe company to a national touring company.'

Danielle Pearson has been appointed Playwright in Residence. She is the winner of the 2017 EU Collective Plays! Competition and a graduate of the Royal Court Writer's Programme. Her adaptation of Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre runs at The Watermill from 29 October to 2 November and then tours to schools.

Abigail Pickard Price has become Associate Director with a remit to further develop the theatre's touring programme and relationships with new playwrights. She directed a new version of Burke and Hare by Tom Wentworth which ran at The Watermill earlier this year and toured to 21 rural venues. Burke and Hare transfers to Jermyn Street Theatre from 28 November to 21 December as part of the theatre's Rebels season.

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