|Known for||Artistic Director of Kiln Theatre|
Born in Sheffield to Tamil parents from Sri Lanka, Rubasingham was educated at Nottingham Girls' High School, after which she studied drama at Hull University (where she received an Honorary Doctorate in 2017).
Soon after graduating Hull University, she received an Arts Council bursary to work as a trainee director at the Theatre Royal Stratford East, where she assisted director Mike Leigh. She then went on to be a freelance theatre director for over fifteen years and during this time held posts as an associate director at the Gate Theatre, the Young Vic, and the Birmingham Repertory Theatre.
She has worked across the UK and internationally. Her focus has been predominantly directing new writing and developing exciting voices. Themes that often arise in her work explore and examine ideas around British identity and the threads of human connection that crosses race, culture and identity; telling stories from different perspectives and specificity that reveals the universality of the human spirit.
She had a long relationship with the international department at the Royal Court Theatre when headed by Elyse Dodgson which allowed her to forge relationships with playwrights from Cuba, Mexico, Brazil, Uganda and India. Indhu has also had a longstanding relationship with Sundance Theatre Lab (2011-2019), under the artistic directorship of Philip Himberg.
She is a Trustee for the Royal Opera House, Metroland (Brent), The George Devine Award and The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. Previous trustee positions include Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, British Council Advisory Board and the Regional Theatre Young Directors Scheme (currently a patron).
She is on the judging panel for the Channel 4 Playwriting Scheme and has been for the Women’s Prize for Playwriting and the Phil Fox Award for Playwriting.
As Artistic Director (2012 - today)
Rubasingham’s mission for Kiln Theatre is to make theatre for all by making space for unheard/ignored voices to be part of the mainstream and be a local theatre with an international vision. The theatre sits in the Borough of Brent.
Rubasingham oversaw a £9 million major renovation of the building which reopened in 2018. The revamped building includes an adaptable stage in the larger 292 seat theatre, better sightlines, new lighting facilities, a new café, improved disabled access and gender-neutral toilets.
Under her artistic leadership, the Creative Engagement programme aims to champion the imagination, aspiration and potential of the Brent community young and old.
During her time as Artistic Director, her production of Red Velvet by Lolita Chakrabarti transferred to the West End’s Garrick Theatre and St Ann’s Warehouse Theater in New York. Her production of Moira Buffini’s Handbagged transferred to the West End’s Vaudeville Theatre prior to a UK tour before playing at 59e59 in New York and Washington DC’s Round House Theatre.
She also programmed Florian Zeller’s ‘Family Trilogy’ which included The Son which transferred to the West End’s Duke of York’s Theatre in 2019 and The Father, which transferred to the West End’s Wyndham’s Theatre in 2015 before moving to the West End’s Duke of York’s Theatre in 2016. The Father was adapted for the 2020 film starring Anthony Hopkins and Olivia Colman, directed by Zeller.
Awards and honours
Best Director, White Teeth, ACTA - Eastern Eye's Arts Culture & Theatre Awards (2019)
Tonic Awards (2017)
MBE, New Year’s Honours List (2017)
Honorary doctorate, University of Hull (2017)
Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre, Handbagged (2014)
The Arts & Culture Award, Asian Women of Achievement Awards (2012)
The Liberty Human Rights Award (2010)
The Carlton Multi-Cultural Achievement Award for Performing Arts (2001)
|2021||The Invisible Hand by Ayad Akhtar||Kiln Theatre||First major revival|
|2021||Girl on an Altar (Rehearsed Reading) by Marina Carr||Kiln Theatre||Live Stream. Co-directed with Susie McKenna|
|2020||The Invisible Hand (Rehearsed Reading) by Ayad Akhtar||Kiln Theatre||Live Stream|
|2020||Pass Over by Antoinette Nwandu||Kiln Theatre||UK premiere|
|2019||When the Crows Visit by Anupama Chandrasekhar||Kiln Theatre||World Premiere|
|2019||Wife by Samuel Adamson||Kiln Theatre||World Premiere|
|2018||White Teeth by Zadie Smith, adapted by Stephen Sharkey||Kiln Theatre||World Premiere|
|2018||Holy Sh!t by Alexis Zegerman||Kiln Theatre||World Premiere|
|2018||The Great Wave by Francis Turnly||National Theatre||World Premiere. A co-production with Kiln Theatre|
|2017||Ugly Lies the Bone by Lindsey Ferrentino||National Theatre|
|2016||The Invisible Hand by Ayad Akhtar||Tricycle Theatre||UK Premiere|
|2015||A Wolf in Snakeskin Shoes by Marcus Gardley||Tricycle Theatre|
|2015||The Motherfucker with the Hat by Stephen Adly Guirgis||National Theatre||Winner of Best Play and nominated for Best Director at Evening Standard Theatre Awards.|
|2015||Multitudes by John Hollingworth||Tricycle Theatre|
|2014||The House That Will Not Stand by Marcus Gardley||Tricycle Theatre|
|2013||Handbagged by Moira Buffini||Tricycle Theatre||West End transfer, Vaudeville Theatre, in 2014|
|2012||Red Velvet by Lolita Chakrabarti||Tricycle Theatre||Winner Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre Laurence Olivier Awards. New York transfer, St. Ann's Warehouse, in 2014. UK tour in 2015. West End transfer, Garrick Theatre, in 2016|
|2012||Belong by Bola Agbaje||Royal Court Theatre|
|2011||Stones in His Pockets by Marie Jones||Tricycle Theatre|
|2010||Ruined by Lynn Nottage||Almeida Theatre|
|2010||Women, Power and Politics by various authors including Moira Buffini and Rebecca Lenkiewicz||Tricycle Theatre|
|2010||Disconnect by Anupama Chandrasekhar||Royal Court Theatre|
|2009||Detaining Justice by Bola Agbaje||Tricycle Theatre|
|2009||The Great Game (with Nicolas Kent )||Tricycle Theatre||Also US Tour, finishing at The Pentagon, Washington.|
|2008||Wuthering Heights, adapted by April De Angelis from the novel by Emily Brontë||Birmingham Rep|
|2007||Free Outgoing by Anupama Chandrasekhar||Traverse Theatre|
|2007||Pure Gold by Michael Bhim||Soho Theatre|
|2007||Heartbreak House by G.B. Shaw||Watford Palace Theatre|
|2006||Free Outgoing by Anupama Chandrasekhar||Royal Court Theatre|
|2006||Sugar Mummies by Tanika Gupta||Royal Court Theatre|
|2006||Fabulation by Lynn Nottage||Tricycle Theatre|
|2005||The Morris by Helen Blakeman||Liverpool Everyman|
|2004||Anna in the Tropics by Nilo Cruz||Hampstead Theatre|
|2004||Another America a new opera by Errolyn Wallen||Sadlers Wells|
|2003||Yellowman by Dael Orlandersmith||Liverpool Everyman and Hampstead Theatre|
|2003||Rhinoceros by Ionesco||UCDavis, California|
|2002||The Misanthrope by Molière , in an adaptation by Martin Crimp||Minerva Theatre, Chichester|
|2002||Bombay Dreams||Apollo Victoria||Associate Director|
|2002||Romeo and Juliet||Chichester Festival Theatre|
|2001||Secret Rapture by David Hare||Minerva Theatre, Chichester|
|2001||Clubland by Roy Williams||Royal Court Theatre|
|2000||The Waiting Room by Tanika Gupta||National Theatre|
|1999||Time of Fire by Charles Mulekwa||Birmingham Rep|
|1999||Lift Off by Roy Williams||Royal Court Theatre|
|1998||The Crutch by Ruwanthie Dechickera||Royal Court Theatre (Upstairs)|
|1998||Starstruck by Roy Williams||Tricycle Theatre||Received the John Whiting Award and an EMMAs Award.|
|1998||Kaahini by Maya Chowdhry||Birmingham Rep|
|1997||A River Sutra by Gita Mehta adapted by Tanika Gupta||Three Mills Island Studios||Received Diverse Acts Award from LAB.|
|1997||Shakuntala by Kalidasa adapted by Peter Oswald||Gate Theatre|
|1996||Storming Young Writers Festival||Royal Court Theatre (Upstairs)|
|1996||Gulp Fiction by Trish Cooke||Theatre Royal Stratford East|
|1996||No Boys' Cricket Club by Roy Williams||Theatre Royal Stratford East|
|1996||Sugar Dollies by Klaus Chatten||Gate Theatre|
|1996||A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen||Young Vic Studio|
|1994/1995||D'yer Eat With Your Fingers?!||Theatre Royal Stratford East|
|1994||Party Girls by Debbie Plentie||Theatre Royal Stratford East|
- Raffray, Nathalie. "MBE for Tricyle Theatre's artistic director". Kilburn Times. Retrieved 15 June 2018.
- "Media & Entertainment – University of Hull". www2.hull.ac.uk. Archived from the original on 23 June 2016. Retrieved 28 January 2017.
- dsimpson2 (17 October 2017). "Alumni invited to nominate candidates for Honorary Degrees". University of Hull Alumni Association. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- "Indhu Rubasingham Masterclass". masterclass.org.uk. Retrieved 28 January 2017.
- "Elyse Dodgson obituary". The Guardian. 2 November 2018. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- Tuesday; May 1st; 2018. "Sundance Institute Announces 2018 Theatre Lab Acting Company and Creative Advisors". www.sundance.org. Retrieved 18 March 2021.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
- "Royal Opera House appoints David Ross as Chair of the Board of Trustees". www.roh.org.uk. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- "Brent2020 — ABOUT METROLAND CULTURES". www.brent2020.co.uk. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- "Channel 4 Announces Winners of Playwrights' Scheme Bursaries | Channel 4". www.channel4.com. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- "Over Kiln: the Tricycle theatre doesn't need a new name". The Guardian. 3 September 2018. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- "Our Mission | Kiln Theatre". kilntheatre.com. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- Ackerman, Naomi (5 September 2018). "Have a first glimpse inside revamped 'widescreen' Kiln Theatre". www.standard.co.uk. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- "Red Velvet (Garrick Theatre) | WhatsOnStage". www.whatsonstage.com. Retrieved 18 March 2021.
- "The Stage Awards winners 2021: Kiln Theatre, London theatre of the year". The Stage. Retrieved 18 March 2021.