Artistic Director to leave Iris Theatre

London theatre news: Tuesday 30 July 2019


Dan Winder is to leave Iris Theatre after 12 years at St Paul's Church in Covent Garden. He becomes Venue Director at Stanley Halls Grade II listed arts venue in South Norwood.
Photo of Dan Winder who leaves Iris Theatre as Artistic Director

Photo: Dr Daniel Winder

Iris Theatre's artistic director, Daniel Winder, is to leave his post after 12 years at St Paul's Church in Covent Garden.

Since graduating from Drama Centre, London, Mr Winder has built Iris into a well-known feature of London's fringe theatre scene.

Each year he has directed at least one of the main summer shows at the venue as well as, for the last six years, writing its family shows.

He has also provided dramaturgical support to all of Iris Theatre's shows; particularly as part of its growing tradition of developing new musical theatre.

Recently, Mr Winder has directed work for Iris Theatre at Hoxton Hall and the Union Theatre outside of the summer season in Covent Garden.

And beyond these in-house productions, Dan and Iris Theatre also co-produce London's Free Open Air Theatre Season with Suzanna Rosenthal.

This season is centred upon two shows running for a month in August at the Scoop in front of City Hall and plays to audiences in excess of 30,000 people per year.

Iris Theatre and Daniel Winder have been nominated for 12 Off West End Awards; and his 2016 production of Treasure Island won the Best Production for Young People in the 'Offies'; with both the 2017 adaptations of Hansel & Gretel and the 2018 adaptation of The Three Musketeers (both of which he wrote) being shortlisted for the same award in the two following years.

His final production for Iris was this summer's Hamlet, with a transgender actor playing the title role, which was nominated for Best Design in the 2019 Offies.

Mr Winder said ...

"It's time to move on but I do so with a heavy heart.

I have loved my time with Iris, working with so many amazing, young and

talented emerging artists, giving many of them their first professional  jobs, but I'm looking forward to a new challenge, bringing new life to some extraordinary performance spaces at Stanley Halls.

It's good to know when it's time to go, and 12 years feels like the perfect point for me.

I now want to create a vibrant new space for emerging artists in south London - but my first task will be getting the buildings ready, including the toilets!".

Iris Theatre will continue to be the resident company at St Paul's Church and hope to have a creative producer in place soon to start planning their 2020 season.

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