Eleanor Philpot

The Royal Exchange appoints new artistic directors

8:41, 10th July 2019

Roy Alexander Weise and Bryony Shanahan have just been announced as artistic directors of the Royal Exchange theatre in Manchester.

The theatre directors are due to work alongside the Royal Exchange’s executive director, Stephen Freeman, acting as joint chief executives.

This follows news released in February that artistic director, Sarah Frankcom, was leaving her role at the Royal Exchange to become LAMDA’s new principle. Weise and Shanahan’s appointment means the venue will return to a joint artistic model.

With Weise winning the James Menzies-Kitchen directors’ award in 2016, and Shanahan acting as the Exchange’s associate director since last year, there is no doubt that the pair are equally equipped to take on this challenging yet exciting role.

In a joint statement, the pair say, ‘[Frankcom] has re imagined the relationship that artists and audiences have with this theatre, championed their voices and celebrated the democracy that the Exchange’s unique space allows. We are really looking forward to building on that dynamic, using it to shape the new work we make and to inform our relationships with communities across Greater Manchester.’

Executive director says, the pair are ‘innovative, creative thinkers and inspiring theatre makers…As joint artistic directors, they bring a fresh and invigorating approach to shaping the future of regional theatre, together with the wider team at the Royal Exchange they will re-imagine what it means for a producing building to place artists and audiences firmly at the heart of everything we do.’

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