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  • Writer's pictureleodoulton

I am the one who mops: a cult-like philosophy of directing

Updated: Aug 7, 2023

I am a firm believer that process defines output.

One reason for UK theatre’s distinctive feeling (and comparative lack of experimentation) is that limited timescales mean tools that can work quickly are preferred over others.

But here is a small chunk of my directing philosophy:

I would like to be a collaborator.

But I am also in charge. I am a facilitator, yes, but I also have the authority, if I choose, to override everyone else in the room if I decide to.

I have quite a loose directorial process. I like building a world first, then finding the details.

It also requires a certain number of leaps of faith by the cast, for which I am grateful.

I believe that to try and minimise the hierarchy in such a situation, where authority is continually relied upon (and de facto exists), requires other steps.

In part that’s picking up the phone when people need to talk, or writing materials to support their learning.

But above all, I think it’s that I’m the one who mops. I tidy the room, because it’s a way (I hope) to show respect and remind me about that mutual obligation.

It also, I think, focuses the mind and provides various other philosophical benefits.

Try and be the one who mops the floor.

Come Bargain With Uncanny Things opens today - why not come along, and see my mopped floor and wonderful cast?


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