2014 Company Profiles
Actor & Workshop Director
Involved as an actor since the first season in 2000; he augmented the company's outreach work developing a thriving youth programme. “Chris Donnelly's Iago is the most restrained and unshowy I've encountered, and this makes the seeping of his poison into Othello's mind all the more compelling and credible.” The Guardian ****
John Mackay as Richard III, 2013 (photo: Mark Douet)
The Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory mission:
To perform the world’s greatest plays with searching intelligence, crystal clarity and shared passion
To maintain a large ensemble on stage - and a lean management team off it
To be open, respectful and creative amongst ourselves in rehearsal & performance
To be open and respectful towards our audiences, regardless of age or background
To engage most particularly with the young - through workshops, placements and other opportunities
To pursue new, creative opportunities, independently and in partnership with others
To practise equality and fair pay across the whole company, based on a Company Wage.
"It is undoubtedly the case that this unsubsidised Bristol outfit offers the most consistent and enjoyable programme of Shakespeare in the country"
Lyn Gardner, THE GUARDIAN
"Productions which both swell and whisper, which are full of stars but free of celebrities"
Susannah Clapp, THE OBSERVER
"One of this country's most admired companies"
Jeremy Kingston, THE TIMES
Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory (SATTF) celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2014. We are an unsubsidised theatre company producing large-cast professional Shakespeare in the intimate in-the-round space of Bristol’s most exciting studio theatre. Our national reputation was established by our very first season of King Lear and A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2000, and our productions now attract audiences from throughout the U.K. and beyond.
Each spring, from early February to the end of April, we offer a Shakespeare double bill, occasionally mixing in works by other authors – in 2004 we produced Middleton & Rowley’s The Changeling, in 2005 Chekhov’s Three Sisters, and in 2012 Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard. We have also appeared elsewhere - in 2004 at the Barbican Pit Theatre in London and in 2009/2010 on the main stage of the Bristol Old Vic (BOV) with Chekhov's Uncle Vanya and Moliere's The Misanthrope respectively (both co-productions with BOV). In 2010 we were invited as one of the centrepieces of The Galway Arts Festival with Uncle Vanya; 2011 saw the company take The Comedy of Errors to the Exeter Northcott; in 2012 The Cherry Orchard transferred to the Kingston Rose; and in 2013 we enjoyed our first U.K tour, taking Two Gentlemen of Verona to Lancaster, Scarborough, Cheltenham, Exeter and Winchester. A further tour is scheduled for As You Like It in 2014.
Here, at your fingertips, is our production history, our casting policy, and updates on current activities – plays in production, plays in preparation; workshops and ancillary events. If you represent a company, or a Trust, or if you can consider becoming a private patron, or joining our Friends’ scheme, you can also find out how to help to sustain us. We are a charity and receive no core funding from public funds, either local or national.
For production details, reviews and pictures, click on Past Productions in the left-hand menu.