Page last updated at 16:43 GMT, Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Donmar showcase for new directors

Donmar Warehouse
The Donmar has supported new directors since 1994

The Donmar Warehouse is returning to the West End with a new scheme showcasing the work of young directors.

The Covent Garden theatre will promote graduates of their Resident Assistant Director (RAD) programme under the Donmar banner at the Trafalgar Studios.

Their work will be shown 12 weeks a year over the next three years.

Charlotte Westenra, Chris Rolls and Roisin McBrinn will each stage a production during the first year of Donmar Trafalgar.

'Important talent'

Westenra will direct Lower Ninth, a new play by US writer Beau Willimon about two men in New Orleans, Malcolm and EZee, who find themselves stranded on a rooftop waiting for rescue following Hurricane Katrina.

McBrinn will direct Novecento, the story of a jazz musician by Alessandro Baricco, and Rolls takes the helm for Jean Cocteau's Les Parents Terribles.

The RAD scheme, which started in 1994, offers young directors at the start of their careers the chance to work with leading theatre directors for a year at the Donmar.

Since it began, the scheme has produced directors like Sam Buntrock, Toby Frow and Rupert Goold and is widely regarded as the most prestigious training programme for young directors in the country.

Michael Grandage, artistic director of the Donmar, said: "It has always been a great privilege to support young directors through the Donmar's RAD scheme and this residency at the Trafalgar will now give everyone an opportunity to watch the next generation of theatre directors at work.

"I have every confidence that over the next three years we will see some serious and important talent emerging that will help us focus on the theatre practitioners of the future."

The season will run from 30 September to 18 December.

The Donmar Warehouse recently ended a year-long residency at the Wyndham's Theatre, in the West End, where it staged Ivanov, Twelfth Night, Madame de Sade and Hamlet.

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