National Theatre Wales

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National Theatre Wales
FormationMay 2009
HeadquartersCardiff, Wales
Coordinates51°28′56.9522″N 3°10′15.4378″W / 51.482486722°N 3.170954944°W / 51.482486722; -3.170954944Coordinates: 51°28′56.9522″N 3°10′15.4378″W / 51.482486722°N 3.170954944°W / 51.482486722; -3.170954944
Official language
Artistic director
Kully Thiarai

National Theatre Wales is the English-language national theatre of Wales and the UK's youngest national theatre company.

It started life as an online community in May 2009 and the company's first season was announced on 5 November that year. Its first production was staged in March 2010.

National Theatre Wales is best known for five key areas of work:

  • making work with local communities
  • pioneering digital work in its productions
  • site-specific productions (like its counterpart in Scotland, National Theatre Wales doesn't have a theatre space of its own)
  • working with internationally renowned artists and companies
  • in-depth engagement with communities (especially through TEAM, its network of friends)

The company focuses on the production of work in the English language, rooted in Wales, with an international reach, and aims to build strong relationships with artists, audiences and communities throughout and beyond Wales.[3]

It refers to Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru, the Welsh-language national theatre of Wales founded in 2003, as its sister company.

The company's founding Artistic Director and Chief Executive, John McGrath, was succeeded in 2016 by Kully Thiarai.

Notable productions[edit]

The Persians (2010), staged at an army training village in Cilieni, near Brecon

The company's first season ended with The Passion (2011), co-directed by and starring Michael Sheen with a cast of a thousand, in his hometown of Port Talbot

The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning (2012) by Tim Price was a study of a shy teenager living in Pembrokeshire, who would go on to play a pivotal role in the Wikileaks scandal

Praxis Makes Perfect (2013) was a touring gig-theatre production, again written by Tim Price and featuring pop duo Neon Neon

Owen Sheers' Mametz (2014) was staged in a field and a forest in Usk, Monmouthshire, recreating a WWI trench. It formed part of the 14-18 NOW First World War centenary events

The Gathering/Yr Helfa was performed on Mount Snowdon, Gwynedd, and incorporated the annual sheep gathering on the mountain

Crouch, Touch, Pause, Engage (2015) was a new, verbatim play written by Robin Soans about the gay Welsh rugby player Gareth “Alfie” Thomas

Roald Dahl's City of the Unexpected (2016) saw NTW team up with Wales Millennium Centre to stage a weekend-long celebration of Roald Dahl, to mark his centenary in and across his hometown of Cardiff. It was the biggest cultural event ever held in Wales.

Cotton Fingers (2018) by Rachel Trezise. Written for the Love Letters to the NHS season, it tells the story of a woman travelling to Wales from Belfast for an abortion. It toured the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland in 2019.[1]


  1. ^ "COTTON FINGERS Will Embark on Ireland Tour". Retrieved 7 August 2019.

External links[edit]