News Story

Mike Tweddle stood in OP's Circle Bar
Credit: Geraint Lewis

Oxford Playhouse has appointed Mike Tweddle as Artistic Director and Chief Executive Officer of the organisation. Mike joins Oxford Playhouse with a wealth of experience in the theatre and cultural sector and will take up his appointment in Autumn 2023.

Debbie Dance, Chair of Oxford Playhouse Board of Trustees, commented: “We are delighted to welcome Mike as the Artistic Director & CEO of Oxford Playhouse. We could not be more pleased to be welcoming Mike back to Oxford, following his previous association as an Evolve artist, to lead the Playhouse. He has already warmed the hearts of everyone he has met with his vision for the future, and we feel sure that he will bring out the very best of the talented and creative OP team to keep the organisation at the heart of Oxford’s cultural scene, as well as driving forward its role as one of the UK’s leading regional theatres.”

Mike Tweddle said of his appointment: “I am thrilled to be joining Oxford Playhouse, a theatre I know well and care about deeply. The organisation played a major role in my professional development, and I’m inspired by its proud history, its recent achievements, and the vision to create a ‘Playhouse for everyone’. I’ve greatly enjoyed meeting with the passionate, talented team and dedicated trustees, and I look forward to collaborating with them on fulfilling that vision.”

Mike Tweddle was Artistic Director and CEO of Tobacco Factory Theatres in Bristol from 2016 - 22, where he oversaw 20 in-house productions - five of which he directed (including the critically-acclaimed A View from the Bridge and Beautiful Thing), and ten of which toured nationally or internationally. He led a vision for life-long creative engagement, embedding community co-creation at the heart of the theatre’s work. He also co-led a capital fundraising campaign, enabling major redevelopment of the building and a new performance and education space.

Previously, Mike Tweddle was Joint Artistic Director of the touring ensemble Out of Chaos, creating award-winning shows that toured to more than 200 theatres around the world. From 2010-15 Mike was co-founding director of BE FESTIVAL, Birmingham’s international theatre festival. Welcoming 20 shows from across Europe each summer, Mike helped establish the festival as an Arts Council National Portfolio Organisation within four years. As a freelance director and dramaturg, Mike has worked for Grand Junction, Shakespeare’s Globe, Ad Infinitum and National Youth Theatre among others.

Mike first got seriously involved in theatre as a student at Oxford University, directing and acting on The Playhouse stages. He then went on to train as a performer at the Jacques Lecoq School in Paris. In 2015, Mike returned to Oxford Playhouse after being awarded a place on the theatre’s artist development scheme, Evolve.