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Edward Kemp

Edward Kemp is a UK-based writer, director, dramaturg and translator. He is currently Chief Executive of the Royal Literary Fund.  From 2007-21 he was Director of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London. He has collaborated with choreographer Cathy Marston on over twenty ballets, with companies across Europe and North America. These include: THE CELLIST; GHOSTS; ECHO & NARCISSUS (Royal Ballet); THE SUIT (Ballet Black); ATONEMENT (Zürich/Joffrey); MY BRILLIANT CAREER (Queensland Ballet); SUMMER AND SMOKE (Houston); OF MICE AND MEN (Joffrey); MRS ROBINSON (San Francisco Ballet); LADY CHATTERLEY'S LOVER (Grands Ballets Canadiens); LES LIAISONS DANGEREUSES (Royal Danish Ballet); BLOOD WEDDING (Helsinki Ballet); JULIA AND ROMEO, WUTHERING HEIGHTS, EIN WINTERNACHTSTRAUM, CLARA and HEXENHATZ (Bern Ballet). 
He has written text for Julian Philips’s HOW THE WHALE BECAME (ROH) and THE YELLOW SOFA (Glyndebourne); Victoria Borisova Ollas’s THE GROUND BENEATH HER FEET (Manchester International Festival); Jason Carr’s SIX PICTURES OF LEE MILLER (Chichester); and Prokofiev’s IVAN THE TERRIBLE (BBC Proms), as well as for composers Sally Beamish, Tansy Davies, Terry Davies, Stuart MacRae, Alwynne Pritchard and Gary Yershon.
Plays and adaptations include: Racine’s ANDROMACHE (RADA/Radio 3); Bulgakov’s MASTER AND MARGARITA (Chichester/Complicite); KING JAMES BIBLE (National); Kleist’s PENTHESILEA; Lorca’s THE HOUSE OF BERNARDA ALBA;

Goldoni’s HOLIDAY TRILOGY (RADA); Brecht’s TURANDOT (Hampstead); 5/11 (Chichester); WG Sebald’s THE EMIGRANTS (Radio 3); Moliere’s DON JUAN AND THE HYPOCHONDRIAC (West Yorkshire Playhouse); Faulkner’s AS I LAY DYING (Young

Vic/Baton Rouge) and THE MYSTERIES (RSC/Radio 3). He has written four short films for RADA. His version of Lessing’s NATHAN THE WISE, originally adapted for Chichester (in a production subsequently recorded for BBC Radio 3), has had revivals across North America, including Off Broadway with F. Murray Abraham and most recently at the Stratford Festival in Ontario.  


As a director, productions include: ROMEO AND JULIET; STUFF HAPPENS; A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC; ANDROMACHE; THE SEA; SIX PICTURES OF LEE MILLER; KING LEAR; THE YOUNG IDEA; COMPANY; PENTHESILEA (RADA); MACBETH (Regent’s Park); OFFICE SUITE; DR FAUSTUS; WILD ORCHIDS; ACCRINGTON PALS (Chichester); BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE (Scarborough); MOMMSENS BLOCK and DOCTOR FAUSTUS LIGHTS THE LIGHTS (Vermont). With Toby Jones and Jane Heather he founded and ran The Table Show, whose shows MISSING REEL; WANTED MAN; COVENTRY and FOUR SLEEPLESS KNIGHTS played at the NT Studio, Battersea Arts Centre, Traverse Theatre Edinburgh, West Yorkshire Playhouse, on BBC Radio and with the British Council on tour.  He has written articles for The Guardian and The Literary Review, has appeared on numerous TV and radio programmes including Front Row and the Today Programme and has been a judge for The Olivier Awards, The Gate Translation Award, the Philip Leverhulme Prize and the Meyer Whitworth Award.  He is currently Co-chair of tiata fahodzi and a trustee of the Central School of Ballet.  

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