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John R. Wilkinson


John is a text-based director living between York and Leeds. He is Artistic Associate at York Theatre Royal and the tenth recipient of the Genesis Future Directors Award at the Young Vic. He directed a production of Winter by Jon Fosse in the Clare Studio in February 2018.

He is a Trustee of Middle Child, was on the Steering Group for IETM Hull 2019 and Agent for Change at Leeds Playhouse (2017-2019).

He is currently undertaking research into new work and touring companies as part of Arts Council England’s Developing Your Creative Practice.

Training: Bretton Hall College and the National Theatre Directors’ Course.



Winner - Genesis Future Directors Award 2018
Finalist - Regional Theatre Young Directors Scheme 2017
Finalist - Royal Theatrical Support Trust Director Award 2016

- Hello and Goodbye (York Theatre Royal) - 2019
- Swallows and Amazons (York Theatre Royal, co-directed with Damian Cruden) - 2019
- Talking Heads (Leeds Playhouse, co-dir. James Brining, Amy Leach and John R. Wilkinson) - 2018
- Winter (Young Vic) - Genesis Future Director Award - 2018
- The Drowned World (National Theatre Studio) - Research and Development - 2017
- Write to Play (Graeae Theatre Company, National Theatre Studio, Royal Court, Manchester Royal Exchange) - 2014 and 2015
- Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down (York Theatre Royal, 4* Stars - The Guardian) - 2013


- Sunshine on Leith (West Yorkshire Playhouse, Phil McIntyre Entertainments, dir. James Brining) - 2018
- NT Connections (National Theatre, dir. Various) - 2017 and 2018


- Made in India (Educational Commission, Tamasha) - 2016-17
- Sefi Atta: Selected Plays - 2016
- BeSpectACTive!, a European network for active spectatorship (York Theatre Royal, Radu Stanca National Theatre, 2015),
- "East is East" (Educational Commission, Trafalgar Studios, Theatre Study Publications, 2014)
- "Antigone" (Educational Commission, Pilot Theatre, Theatre Study Publications, 2013-14)
- "To Kill A Mockingbird" (The Touring Consortium Theatre Company, 2011 National Tour).


- Rufus Norris (National Theatre)
- Susan Stern (Voiceworks)
- Damian Cruden (York Theatre Royal)
- Juliet Forster (York Theatre Royal)


- Sarah Frankcom (Royal Exchange Theatre - "Observer Mondays")
- Ian Brown (West Yorkshire Playhouse)
- Katie Posner (Pilot Theatre)
- Wendy Harris (Tutti Frutti Productions)


- Developing Your Creative Practice (Arts Council England)
- Director in Residence and Agent for Change at Leeds Playhouse (2017-2019)
- Co-Facilitator of Young Vic Reach Out at York Theatre Royal
- Artistic Associate at York Theatre Royal


- Trustee - Middle Child
- Stage Directors UK




- Change Creation 2019
- Developing Your Creative Practice (Arts Council England)
- National Theatre Studio Directors' Course 2018
- Relational Dynamics 1st - Coaching, Training and Facilitation (Emma Haughton & Jamie Beddard)
- Third Angel's 2015/16 Mentoring Programme (Alex Kelly)
- Bretton Hall College and University of Leeds (First Class)


West Yorkshire


2-5 years

What I do

  • BSL interpretation
  • Devising
  • Dialect / Voice Direction
  • Dramaturgy
  • Movement Direction
  • Performance Art
  • Physical Theatre / Mime
  • Site Responsive/Immersive
  • Teaching / Coaching
  • Working with Deaf non-professional adults / children
  • Working with Deaf artists
  • Working with disabled non-professional adults / children
  • Working with disabled artists
  • Working with learning disabled adults / children
  • Working with young people
  • Working with young people with special educational needs
  • Writing