Winner 2005

Natalie Abrahami

Production: Play and Not I by Samuel Beckett

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Natalie is Associate Artist at Hull Truck and was Artistic Director of the Gate Theatre, Notting Hill from 2007-2012.

At the Gate, Natalie commissioned and directed: Anthony Weigh’s new version of Lorca’s Yerma in co-production with Hull Truck, Lorrie Moore’s How To Be An Other Woman, Nancy Harris’ adaptation of Tolstoy’s novella, The Kreutzer Sonata (also at La MaMa E.T.C, New York)Sam Holcroft’s, Vanya, inspired by Chekhov’s original, and Alexandra Wood’s Unbroken, a dance-theatre response to Schnitzler’s La Ronde. Other directing credits at the Gate include: Mark Ravenhill’s Women in Love and Anne Washburn’s The Internationalist.

Other directing credits include: Parallax (Almeida), Merchant of Venice (Creation), After Miss Julie (Young Vic), Pericles (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream(Headlong, Hull Truck and Nuffield), Lucy Caldwell’s Guardians (Hightide Festival), Alexandra Wood’s The Eleventh Capital  (Royal Court), Samuel Beckett’s Play and Not I (Battersea Arts Centre), and Amélie Nothomb’s Human Rites (Southwark Playhouse).

Natalie trained at the Royal Court and National Theatre Studio.

The JMK Award gave me a tremendous opportunity to direct two Beckett plays which I loved, and would never have been able to afford to stage otherwise: being too short, too technical, and too expensive. The Award is extraordinary because its unique existence fulfils every young director’s wish: to choose a play and then receive the financial support to stage it. It was an amazing privilege to have this wish fulfilled - Natalie Abrahami

Theatrically terrific – the language has such mesmerising vigour and the imaginative power of the plays knocks you out – Jeremy Kingston in The Times

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If Natalie Abrahami had any migraines about this taut double bill, it doesn’t show on her stage. Both are an unflagging assault on the senses, a visceral, witty and highly enjoyable bubble of Beckett at his sly cackling best – Lucy Powell in Time Out

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Natalie Abrahami, winner of this year’s James Menzies-Kitchin Award, has already proved herself a director of exceptional flair. Watching this Beckett is like falling backwards into hell, hearing cries
- Lyn Gardner in The Guardian

In 2005 our weekend workshop at BAC was led by Roxana Silbert, Artistic Director of Paines Plough and JMK Trustee. The shortlisted directors included Polly Findlay, Carrie Cracknell, Sam Leifer, Charlotte Westenra, James Tovell, Mel Cook and Sarah Norman.

Production photos by Pete Le May.