Utter is a new work company, dedicated to developing and touring exhilarating story-led work that make our audiences feel, think and experience the world in a new light.
The company places collaboration and talent development at its heart, working with a diverse array of exceptional artists, to tell urgent theatrical stories that say something about the world around us in fresh adventurous ways.
Our first show Educating Ronnie, (A Macrobert/Utter Production) won a Fringe First in 2012 before touring extensively across the UK, while our second show Bloody Trams, (A Traverse Theatre Company Production in association with Utter) has had two sell-out runs at the Traverse theatre gaining exceptional four-star reviews across the board.
Utter is led by Co-Artistic Directors Gareth Nicholls and Joe Douglas, working with producer Sarah Gray.
Gareth trained at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and alongside his work with Utter is Main-stage Director In Residence at the Citizens Theatre. He has directed and worked with most theatres in Scotland including National Theatre of Scotland, Tron Theatre, The Arches, Citizens Theatre, Play Pie and a Pint, Traverse and Macrobert Arts Centre. www.garethnicholls.net
Joe Douglas trained in Directing at Rose Bruford College, London. His directing credits include Letters Home (Grid Iron/Edinburgh International Book Festival – Fringe First Winner 2014), Bloody Trams (Traverse/Utter), The BFG (Dundee Rep), Dear Scotland, The Last Polar Bears, Our Teacher’s A Troll, Allotment and re-directing the 2013 world tour of Black Watch (National Theatre of Scotland).
Sarah Gray has worked as a Producer in varying capacities over the last ten years. She was co-producer of the Young Company at the National Theatre of Scotland, going on to become Assistant Producer within the main organization, producer of Wee Stories for four years and most recently, Programme and Projects Producer at Macrobert Arts Centre in Stirling. She is currently the Producer at Cumbernauld Theatre as part of Creative Scotland’s Producer’s Project.
Produced by Utter, in association with The Byre Theatre, St Andrews
Written by Adam McNamara
Directed by Joe Douglas
Designed by Natasha Jenkins
Lighting Design by Kate Bonney
Sound Design by Kevin Murray
Four Police Officers sit in a riot van. Called out to a domestic dispute, which may turn violent, they are on stand by; waiting to enter a flat where a man is wielding a samurai sword. We wait with them, experiencing the relationships forged through the stress of the job and the turmoil of being caught between following orders and protecting themselves.
Written by a former Police Officer, Stand By shows the modern-day Police Service laid bare.
A unique performance, audiences are asked to wear single-earpiece headphones, as Police Officers do, to tell this urgent story in a multi-sensory way.
Previews: 4th & 5th August 2017 at The Byre Theatre, St Andrews
Edinburgh Festival Fringe (part of the Made in Scotland showcase)
Army @ The Fringe in Association with Summerhall, 89 East Claremont Street (Venue 210)
Fri 11 Aug – Sat 26 Aug 2017 (not 14th or 21st) at 6.45pm
BSL performance - Tue 15th Aug
A Traverse Theatre Company Production in association with Utter
Directed by Joe Douglas
Music by David Paul Jones
Lighting Design by Davy Cunningham
Assistant Direction by Jo Rush
Cast: Jonathan Holt and Nicola Roy
A verbatim piece created by the People of Edinburgh, the show formed a rapid response to one of Edinburgh’s most contested and emotive debates over the last decade – the Edinburgh Trams.
Created in Traverse two over three days, this rapid response used anonymous interviews that took place over a few weeks leading up to the show, with director Joe Douglas talking directly to people all over the capital – from coffee shop owners and taxi drivers to civil servants. This material then formed the basis for the rapid response piece, where two actors recreated the opinions of the People of Edinburgh on stage with the verbatim interviews being fed to the actors through earpeices. The composer and pianist David Paul Jones performed live accompaniment and original songs based on the testimony, giving this urgent and adventurous piece a cabaret flavour.
"a powerful tidal wave of pent up energy and emotion" - The Scotsman on Bloody Trams
The Herald **** The Scotsman **** WhatsonStage **** Time Out ****
Runs: April 2014 Traverse theatre / August 2014 Traverse Theatre Edinburgh Festival Fringe
A Macrobert/Utter Production
Performed and Written by Joe Douglas
Direction and Dramaturgy by Gareth Nicholls
Music composed by Michael-John McCarthy
Video Design by Tim Reid
Set Design by Lisa Sangster
In 2002, Joe Douglas went on a gap year trip to Uganda, to visit an aunt who was working for a charity. Amidst the six week blur of safaris, white-water rafting and orphanages, Joe made friends with Ronnie… Ronnie was 16, Joe was 18. They were both the eldest sons of large families. They both supported Manchester United. Six months later, back in Manchester, Joe got a text: “Brother my sponsor has pulled out on me and I want to stay in school. Can you help? Ronnie x”
That text was to change both of their lives and inextricably link them together. An astonishing true story, written and performed by Joe himself, Educating Ronnie takes place over a decade: 4000 miles apart and thousands of pounds invested, it explores the murky processes behind bettering oneself in Uganda.
Runs: August 2012 part of Made in Scotland Edinburgh Festival showcase / Scottish Tour Sept -Oct 2013 / UK Tour Sept - Oct 2014
Awards: Winner of Fringe First 2012 / Shortlist for Royal National Theatre Foundation Award 2013 / Runner-Up Scottish Arts Club Award
"As thought provoking as they come" - Independent on Educating Ronnie
The Independent **** The Scotsman **** The List **** British Theatre Guide ****
Utter is dedicated to using the arts as a tool for creative learning and development, believing passionately that engagement in artistic practices (no matter what point in life you come to it) has an ability to enliven, empower and help us all see the world in a new light.
From school workshops accompanying our productions to stand alone educational residencies Utter creates, develops and delivers a number of tailored experiences that places collaboration, creativity and learning at their heart.
For more information on any of our creative learning opportunities please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
As a company we are passionate about developing artistic talent at every stage of a persons career and are always on the look out for new collaborators to work with and learn from. From new writers to established designers, through visual artists to musicians we can provide an environment to play, create and learn through development workshops, readings and mentoring schemes.
If you have a script you’d like us to read, an idea you want to discuss or would simply like a coffee and a chat, please do get in touch.
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