Partners and supporters

RSC Open Stages partner theatres include:

Contact Theatre, Manchester
A dynamic charity based in Manchester. Placing young people at the heart of everything it does Contact provides life-changing opportunities for the next generation of artists, audiences and creative leaders. Seeking to redefine theatre for the 21st century Contact presents and produces a diverse artistic programme, both in its building, in off-site spaces and across the internet.

Dundee Rep Theatre, Dundee
Dundee Rep was born in 1939 and since then as undergone a series of amazing transformations. They're vision is of a creative community whose work is a model of excellence, synonymous with quality across all its activities. Rooted in making work for and with a diverse local audience whilst strengthening its national reputation, complemented by a range of activities on an international scale. A national cultural asset which the people of Dundee feel ownership over and in which they can take enormous pride.

Sherman Cymru, Cardiff
Since 2007, when Sherman Cymru was formed through the merger of Sherman Theatre Limited and Sgript Cymru Limited, they have consistently produced critically acclaimed and award winning work in both Welsh and English.

They are currently working offsite while the Sherman undergoes a long awaited capital redevelopment. They anticipate that we will be returning to the building in late November 2011 and reopening in early 2012.

Whilst offsite they have had one of their busiest artistic years producing some compelling new work and a much admired production of Measure for Measure at locations in Cardiff and South Wales. Along the way they have collaborated with Dan y Gwely, National Theatre Wales, Shared Experience and Theatr Iolo.

Questors Theatre, London
The Questors Theatre is a busy community theatre in Ealing, west London, staging 15-18 productions a year, encompassing modern works and classic drama. They have a long history of supporting new plays, presenting the first production of Tom Stoppard's Guildenstern and Rosencrantz (as it was then titled) in 1964, and early works by James Saunders, Dannie Abse and Tom Sharpe. Their Playhouse seats 350 and was one of the first purpose-built British theatres after the war (probably the first to be designed post-war), opened in 1964 by Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.

The venue also includes a Studio which seats 90, as well as three rehearsal rooms and extensive workshop and wardrobe facilities. They have around 1,500 members of whom 600 are involved in presenting their productions. Prominent past members of The Questors or our youth groups include RSC and TV actor Oliver Ford Davies; stage and screen actor Anne-Marie Duff; poet, broadcaster and past Children's Laureate Michael Rosen; theatre director Declan Donnellan; RSC, West End and Broadway playwright Peter Whelan; Cirque du Soleil Technical Operations Director Andy Rungen; and former Blue Peter presenter Konnie Huq.

They have also recently launched our Questors Academy, a theatre training academy which offers part-time actor training for all ages and levels, as well as a BA Hons in Theatre Production, and includes a 500-strong youth theatre.

The Lyric Theatre, Belfast
Northern Ireland's only full-time producing theatre is an integral part of its community and has been for the last 50 years. It makes a unique and vital contribution to Northern Ireland's cultural life and aims to produce high-quality professional theatre that is alive to the complex cultural experience and diverse traditions of our community.

Nuffield Theatre, Southampton
Situated on the University of Southampton's campus, this is one of the South's leading producing theatres. Over the last forty years The Nuffield has come to be recognised in England and abroad as a major force in British Theatre. Today, The Nuffield - led by its Artistic Director, Patrick Sandford and Executive Director, Kate Anderson - creates award-winning productions that tour nationally and sometimes internationally.  The theatre also plays host to the world's best national and international touring companies and regularly attracts some of the country's most gifted and well-regarded actors.

The Nuffield has become a vital artistic resource for Southampton and the surrounding area, and invests in developing new artists and productions and provides a full and varied educational and participatory programme. The Nuffield also runs a highly acclaimed writers' group for aspiring playwrights and is home to Hampshire Youth Theatre.

Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon
The Royal Shakespeare Company is one of the world's best known theatre companies. It's our job to connect people with Shakespeare and produce bold, ambitious work with living writers, actors and artists.

We are an ensemble company, so everyone here has a part to play in creating distinctive theatre. Our job is to connect and help others connect with Shakespeare and produce bold, ambitious work with living writers, actors and artists.

We believe in taking risks and pushing creative boundaries - finding new ways of doing things and learning through action. Our audiences are at the heart of all we do and we want to challenge, inspire and involve them.

Our home is in Stratford-upon-Avon, where we have just reopened the Royal Shakespeare and Swan Theatres after a £112.8m transformation to bring actors and audiences closer together. We play regularly in London, Newcastle upon Tyne and on tour across the UK and the world.

As well as the plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries, we produce new work from living artists and develop creative links with theatre-makers from around the world.

We work with teachers to inspire a life-long love of Shakespeare in young people and run events for everyone to explore and participate in our work.
We celebrate our 50th birthday in 2011 and will lead the World Shakespeare Festival as part of the Cultural Olympiad in 2012.

RSC Open Stages partner organisations
Scottish Community Drama Association representing 184 amateur groups
The Bear Pit 13 amateur groups in Stratford-upon-Avon

Drama Association of Wales representing 500 amateur groups
The Drama Association of Wales believes that art should be accessible to all. Through our network of local theatre companies we help to bring high quality drama to communities across Wales whether through direct participation or through audience experience. We publish and promote new work and through our script library service we enable groups and individuals to discover and access the largest English language script lending library in the world.

NODA National Operatic and Drama Association representing 2476 amateur groups
The National Operatic and Dramatic Association (NODA) was founded in 1899 'to protect and advance the interests of operatic and dramatic art, and of societies engaged therein'. Our membership goes from strength to strength with over 2,500 society members and 2,500 individual enthusiasts staging musical, operas, plays, concerts and pantomimes in venues ranging from the country's leading professional theatres to village halls.

All England Theatre Festival representing a network of amateur drama festivals across England
The All England Theatre Festival runs the nation's only eliminating contest of one act plays; giving amateur groups the opportunity to take part in a progression of festivals, starting in their own area and possibly ending at the English Final, performing alongside other amateur companies and in front of an adjudicator.

Little Theatre Guild representing 103 voluntary run theatres
The Little Theatre Guild (LTG) represents 104 member theatres who own and operate their own theatre premises and are all amateur companies. The output is in excess of 880 productions each year to an audience base of more than 780,000 patrons, having a combined turnover in excess of £5m.

International Theatre Exchange
International Theatre Exchange (ITE) is the centre of a GB network that has access to and which exchanges information and knowledge on international amateur theatre festivals, workshops, master classes and theatre in education and the sort of theatre that works well at an international festival. It is the GB National Centre for the world amateur theatre organisation AITA/IATA and is a member of the region known as Central European Committee (CEC). ITE has recently initiated a project called RoundandRound with Slovenia, Czech Republic and most recently Lithuania to raise the standard of international theatre directing. Members have experience of hosting overseas theatre companies and of taking GB groups overseas and seeks to increase the number of exchanges between GB and overseas theatre groups.

Voluntary Arts Network representing 300 amateur arts national and regional bodies
Voluntary Arts is the independent development agency and representative voice of the voluntary and amateur arts across the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. Our mission is 'promoting practical participation in the arts and crafts'. As well as supporting and advocating for the voluntary arts sector we work with the voluntary arts sector to increase and widen arts participation. This includes over 200 national and regional umbrella bodies, and through them, tens of thousands of local groups of voluntary arts practitioners.

The Scottish Community Drama Association (SCDA) enthusiastically supports and encourages the development of theatre arts and drama in the volunteer-led sector by promoting high quality standards and best practise amongst our members.

They continually organise and promote popular and successful festivals, run playwriting competitions and offer training in all aspects of theatre including: acting, set design and construction, costume and make up. You can keep updated on all of these events online or by reading the monthly newsletter or the quarterly in-house magazine, 'Scene'. They also have thousands of plays available on loan to members which are housed in 5 libraries across Scotland.

The Bear Pit is a voluntary arts organisation founded in 2008 with the purpose of bringing together the Visual and Performing Arts groups based in Stratford-upon-Avon.

The Bear Pit supports and promotes the work of over 30 artistic groups, amateur and professional, based in and around the historic town of Stratford-upon-Avon.

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Teaching Shakespeare