Rupert Hands was born into the theatre. He grew up backstage at the Royal Shakespeare Company, and later at Clwyd Theatr Cymru, observing and learning his trade from the leading writers, directors, actors, designers, lighting designers, and technical crew of the day. He has learned his lessons well. He has a deep understanding of Shakespeare and the Classics but is equally at home in the vanguard of modern writing and production. In working with writers and directors on the development of a text he brings not simply an incisive appreciation of the immediate dramatic possibilities of the work, but a deep understanding of it’s place in current theatrical trends. To project into the future of an art form you have to have to be thoroughly conversant with its past highlights. Continuity is everything in good theatre. At a time when much of theatre is directionless, hit-and-miss, or misguidedly inward looking, the ability of a mentor to guide writers along the rocky road to success is paramount. Rupert understands the nuts and bolts of theatre production and text development, but he also has vision, patience, and an imperturbable drive to put the right play in the right place for the right audience. I have talked theatre with Rupert for many years and found his theatrical insights invaluable. We’ve worked together on a number of projects, workshopped them, and are currently bringing two new plays to rehearsal draft stage. Once we’re out of this current period of inactivity I look forward to working with Ruper on bringing them from final draft to the stage...
Rupert’s incisive critical faculties make him an invaluable asset to a production, as a director, as dramaturg and as script developer. I highly recommend working with him.
Rupert's input transformed my play! From the first read, he focused on what makes live drama electric and unforgettable: human conflict, unspoken tensions, theatricality, and staging. After years of working with actors, he has an incredible ear for authentic dialogue. And he's always thinking about the final product: a live staged play. Rupert understands that the point of a script isn't to create a written work, but a live event, and so he looks at it from many perspectives: the director, the actors, the dramaturges, the crew. He challenges you to lose every ounce of preciousness. For my play, he suggested brilliant ways to restructure the plot so that a live audience will be gripped by the central conflict within the first five minutes. Rupert's was exactly the type of specialized theatre expertise I needed as a prose writer. He understands what makes theatre writing different from television, what an audience will feel instinctively, what can be problematic in staging, what bores, annoys, delights, and moves. I'll be taking all my future stage scripts through a Rupert round!
Rupert has always been a valued collaborator of mine, who's dramaturgical and script development skills have elevated every production we have worked together on. He is a practitioner of outstanding merit and I highly recommend him!