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Founder and artistic director Barrie Rutter OBE will step down in April 2018 after leading the company for twenty-five years. Rutter founded Northern Broadsides in 1992 and under his artistic leadership the company have become one of the UK’s leading touring theatre companies and produced over 70 productions.

Over the last twenty-five years Rutter has overseen many of Northern Broadsides’ big successes including casting Lenny Henry in Othello and Mat Fraser in Broadsides’ most recent production Richard III as part of Hull 2017, as well as the acclaimed productions of The Wars of the Roses, Rutherford & Son (directed by Jonathan Miller) and the award-winning An August Bank Holiday Lark. In 2015 Barrie was awarded the OBE for Services to Drama.

Rutter’s final productions for Northern Broadsides will be the forthcoming world premiere of For Love or Money, Blake Morrison’s new adaptation of Alain Rene Lesage’s French comedy Turcaret which will open at the Viaduct Theatre in Halifax in September and then tour until December 2017. In January 2018, he will direct the Shakespeare’s Globe and Northern Broadsides co-production of The Captive Queen at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse.

On leaving his post, Rutter said: “Having failed to lead the team in securing a long overdue increase in Arts Council funding, I have decided that after 25 wonderful years it is the right time for me to stand down. I leave the Supporters of Northern Broadsides in the hands of a robust and creative staff.

A spokesperson for the Board said ‘The company recognises the significant contribution Barrie Rutter has made to theatre, the arts in general and the lives of his colleagues over the years. In establishing Northern Broadsides 25 years ago, he created a vibrant and visionary organisation that is committed to ensuring that his legacy survives into the future. The Board of Northern Broadsides are delighted to be continuing as an Arts Council England NPO organisation and are looking forward to working with an extremely talented creative team over the coming years. Barrie Rutter will be missed both on and off the Broadsides stage, but we wish him well in his next adventures.’

25 Years In Pictures – Copyright Nobby Clark

For Love or Money
15 September – 2 December
Touring the UK

Northern Broadsides present
the world premiere of
A daft comedy about greed

A new adaptation of Lesage’s Turcaret
by Blake Morrison
Directed by Barrie Rutter
Designed by Jessica Worrall
Lighting by Tim Skelly

It’s the 1920s. In a small Yorkshire town, the wily-widow, Rose, entertains the advances of two dubious suitors. Fuller (Barrie Rutter) is a fabulously rich and morally corrupt banker who woos Rose by parading his wealth whilst hiding a few secrets. Handsome Arthur is much younger and deceitful through and through. He plays Rose for as much money as she can take from Fuller.

A love triangle then; a deliciously wicked tale of rivalry and greed.

Throw in a bailiff, a drunkard, a vamp, a second-hand clothes dealer and two upwardly mobile servants, and the complications multiply.

Adapted from Alain-Rene Lesage’s savage eighteenth-century comedy Turcaret, Blake Morrison’s For Love or Money is a story of monstrous wealth and whopping lies.

“Hysterically funny…left the audience gagging for more.”
 The Guardian (Lisa’s Sex Strike)

“Richly vivid and comic.”
The Observer (The Man with Two Gaffers)

“A gloriously bawdy romp … Hypnotically funny … undiluted joy.”
The Stage (The Cracked Pot)


Thank you every penny counts in the Arts!

Sunday 11th June 2017 was 25 years to the day that Northern Broadsides first production was born.

Help us celebrate with our Silver Anniversary Boar Badge!
Limited Edition

The Captive Queen
Friday 2 February – Sunday 4 March 2018

Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

Directed by Barrie Rutter
Designed by Jessica Worrall
This timely story of passion, politics and patriarchy is a reimagining of John Dryden’s Restoration drama, Aureng-zebe (1675). The Captive Queen is set in the late 20th century during the last days of the great woollen mills of the north of England, but retains a flavour of Dryden’s original Mughal Indian setting. The original score by Niraj Chag re-creates the rhythms of war, of workmanship, and of India, providing the backdrop for the regular beat of Dryden’s rhyming couplets, which echo the relentless whirring of the machines.

Hard Times
Coming 2018
Touring the UK

Northern Broadsides present

A new adaptation of Charles Dickens Hard Times
by Debbie McAndrew

Directed by Conrad Nelson

Imagine a world where imagination is forbidden. Coketown is such a place. Thomas Gradgrind will not permit fanciful thoughts in his school or his home. But what effect will this policy have on his own children, Tom and Louisa? How can he protect them from corrupting influences – especially when the circus comes to town?

Conrad Nelson directs Deborah McAndrew’s witty adaptation of Charles Dickens’ great Northern novel to bring you a joyful juggling and tumbling through this touching and often hilarious tale of repression and longing.

Emma Rice, Artistic Director Designate, welcomes three new Associate Companies to the Globe and we are one of them!
JUST ANNOUNCED – Barrie Rutter, Artistic Director of Northern Broadsides, assembles a cast of British Asian actors in this wry exploration of the folly of old age, the allure of power, and the bewildering effects of lust and desire.

Northern Broadsides are delighted to announce that actors Sir Lenny Henry CBE, Sir Tom Courtenay, Stephanie Cole OBE, Meera Syal CBE, Sanjeev Bhaskar OBE and playwrights Mike Poulton and Blake Morrison will be joining the award winning Yorkshire theatre company as Patrons.

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