James Macdonald (director)

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James Macdonald is a British theatre and film director who is best known for his work with contemporary writers such as Caryl Churchill.[1] He was associate and deputy director of The Royal Court from 1992–2006. There he staged the premiere of Sarah Kane's Blasted (1995), her highly controversial debut which sparked a Newsnight debate on BBC Television.[2] He also directed the premiere of Kane's Cleansed (1998) and 4.48 Psychosis which opened after her suicide.[3][4]

Born in 1958, Macdonald began working as a director at the Royal Court under Max Stafford-Clark, in his twenties after graduating from Oxford University and L'Ecole Internationale de Theatre Jacques Lecoq. Since leaving the Royal Court in 2007 Macdonald has worked extensively in New York, in most of the major theatres across London and the West End, and directed a 2008 feature film of A Number by Caryl Churchill for HBO/BBC Films.[5]

His productions include Fewer Emergencies by Martin Crimp at the Royal Court (2005),[6] Glengarry Glen Ross in the West End (2007),[7] The world premiere of The Arrest of Ai Weiwei at the Hampstead Theatre (2013) [8][9] and Bakkhai at Almeida Theatre in 2015.[10]

James Macdonald is on the board of Stage Directors UK.[11]


Awards and nominations[edit]

  • Evening Standard Awards, Best Play, The Father, Theatre Royal Bath, 2015
  • Obie Award USA, winner, Best Director for Love and Information, 2014
  • Evening Standard Awards, Longlisted for Best Director, Roots, Donmar Warehouse, 2013
  • Evening Standard Awards, Longlisted for Best Director, Love and Information by Caryl Churchill, (Royal Court Downstairs), 2012


External links[edit]