robin colyer : theatre practitioner

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As artistic director for Flintlock Theatre, I am currently Artist in Residence at Oxford Playhouse.  Most recently, I adapted and directed Flintlock's sell-out debut, The Government Inspector, and I am involved on an ongoing basis directing research and development projects for the company.  Forthcoming work includes Flintlock's new production, a re-imagining of Don Quixote.  


Other directing credits include: remounting the TMA award-winning production of Spend! Spend! Spend! at the Watermill Theatre, originally directed by Craig Revel Horwood; The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui for Flintlock Youth Company and several innovative installation pieces for the Barbican Art Gallery for Indra's Web, a collaboration between actors and musicians. My passion for passing on skills to the younger generation has also led me to directed a variety of productions for several youth theatre companies, including: Hot Mikado, Macbeth, The Tempest, West Side Story and Sweeney Todd.


An attention to detail surrounding the overall theatrical event, a rigorous approach to text and a leaning towards physical storytelling as an ensemble over technical wizardry, are all defining features of my work.


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Recent / Forthcoming Productions

DON Q - FLINTLOCK THEATRE


Norman has lost himself in books. In his twilight years and increasingly ignored in a rushing world, he retreats into tales of knight errantry and damsels in distress. With his sense of reality waning and threatened with “incarceration in a home for the aged”, he embarks on a quest to fulfill his destiny, taking his loyal friend Sam along for the ride. 


Battling muggers, hoodies and, sometimes, sheep, Norman and Sam become Don Q and Sancho, inept righters of wrongs and utterly incapable rescuers of the worthy, quite by chance putting the world to rights for those they least expect to help. Written by Anna Glynn, directed by Robin Colyer.


"FUNNY, TENDER, CHARMING... AN ABSOLUTE MUST-SEE" 
Katy Snelling, Programmer - Oxford Playhouse

"AN ASTOUNDINGLY FUN, ROLLICKINGLY BIG-HEARTED RIOT OF A SHOW"  
Michelle Walker, Producer - Oxford Playhouse

"LYRICAL, WARM, MOVING AND VERY, VERY FUNNY"  
Jonathan Lloyd, Artistic Director - Pegasus Theatre

"Scenery is minimal but highly effective, as simply a stepladder, a door, and occasionally a chair serve to conjure up the play's locations. Props and costumes, on the other hand, abound, and the cast juggle books, kitchen utensils, hoodies, walking sticks, signs, cue cards, and more books with great aplomb. Credit must go to director Robin Colyer for his marshalling of the action, particularly in the play's unspoken musical sequences, such as a recap of Norman's life story, and Don Q and Sancho Panza's thrilling (and hilarious) ride away from the retirement home.

"The action in Don Q is frenetic and very funny, although the play does have its more poignant moments, which stand out all the more in the midst of the frenzied comings and goings. Don Q stays true to the spirit of Cervantes' original novel, while also subtly raising some important points about how we treat the elderly. It is also a heartfelt celebration of books, libraries and storytelling. If you don't manage to see it this week – and you should – then a tour is planned for 2015. Don't miss it."
Oxford Daily Info

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU FIND A DINOSAUR - OXFORD PLAYHOUSE


Everybody likes digging, right? Maybe you use a spade, or just your hands. Sand or earth fly everywhere until you discover something. Perhaps it’s a stone, or an old toy, or that biscuit you’d been saving. Or maybe, just maybe, it’s …a dinosaur! In 1824 an eccentric Oxford scientist, William Buckland, discovered a bone from a creature that no one had ever seen before. He named it the Megalosaurus, and he was desperate to tell the world about it. Are you ready to join him when the amazing dinosaur story first begins? Oxford Playhouse presents Oxford’s very own pre-historic story in this bone-shaking, music-making, belly-aching show for everyone aged 4 to 8 years and their families. Written by Nick Walker, directed by Robin Colyer


"Running at a brisk 50 minutes, What to Do When You Find a Dinosaur is long enough to feel like a proper play, but not too long to strain youthful attention spans. The eternal fascination dinosaurs hold for small people is this show’s main selling point, and it’s an excellent one. And in the confines of the Burton Taylor Studio, around the back of the Oxford Playhouse, with the audience sitting mostly on floor cushions, kids get a tremendous closeup view of proceedings in a wonderfully relaxed environment. With impressive theatrical skills on display – including a fine bit of puppeteering from Tuck when the Megalosaurus is finally assembled – and some entertaining gags aimed at the parents, this is a show that takes the skeleton of recorded fact and locates the funny bone. Fossilised, of course."

Andrew Pulver, Guardian.

THE GOVERNMENT INSPECTOR - FLINTLOCK THEATRE

This high-energy production features four actors swapping characters at break-neck speed. Suitable for ages 10 to 110, Flintlock employs its trademark dance and extraordinary physical storytelling to create an laugh-out-loud 100-minute experience punctuated by a fast and furious Klezmer soundtrack and live music interval entertainment. Adapted and Directed by Robin Colyer


"Bouncing off the walls with pride & excitement at how stonkingly brilliant Flintlock Theatre are"

Michelle Walker - Producer, Oxford Playhouse


"Congratulations for such a terrific show...there was a real buzz about the company. The attention to detail in every area was terrific – the planning of everything was just right."

Hedda Beeby - Director, Watermill Theatre


"Terrific fun!" ****

Oxford Times


"A frenetic, all-singing, all-dancing, and, above all, uproariously funny retelling of this timeless story. The play's seemingly effortless wordplay is accompanied by non-stop action as the cast dash on and off, dance their way through the changes between acts, and, as if all that weren't enough, even venture out into the foyer during the interval to serenade the audience.  The play is staged in the round, which gives the cast great scope for some good-natured fun at the audience's expense. This is all done with such warmth and verve that it's impossible for even the most curmudgeonly spectator to resist."

Oxford Daily Info