Winner 2011

Cathal Cleary, Theatre DirectorPhoto by Alastair Muir

Cathal Cleary‘s winning production of Disco Pigs had a sell-out run at the Young Vic from 2nd – 28th September 2011.

“There is no doubt that Cathal Cleary is a very talented and imaginative young director. Repeatedly, he shows flashes of brilliance that herald a bright future.” British Theatre Guide

“Funny and terrifying at the same time, Disco Pigs is superb.” The Independent

“Cathal Cleary, the director, won this year’s JMK Award. You can see — from his mastery of stagecraft, from the way he siphons the energy from his talented cast of Charlie Murphy and Rory Fleck-Byrne — that he has every chance of following such JMK winners as Thea Sharrock and Bijan Sheibani  to the top table.” The Times

Cathal Cleary graduated from National University of Ireland, Galway with an MA in Drama & Theatre Studies in 2005. He assisted JMK Award alumni Joe Hill-Gibbins on The Beauty Queen of Leenane at The Young Vic (under the Jerwood Assistant Directors’ Program) and Polly Findlay on Roald Dahl’s Twisted Tales at the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith. Previous directing credits include Trad (Workshop performance, Young Vic), A Raisin in the Sun (extract, 40th Anniversary performance Young Vic), Appointment in Limbo (Dublin Fringe) and The Cripple of Inishmaan (Town Hall Theatre, Galway).

Cathal says: “Winning the JMK Award has allowed me to work on a play that I feel very passionately about, with an incredibly talented group of people and in one of the most exciting and  progessive theatres in London. This simply wouldn’t be possible without the support of the trust. For this rare and unique opportunity I feel hugely privileged and thankful.”


Charlie Murphy and Rory Fleck-Byrne Charlie Murphy in Disco Pigs

The runners up this year are Prasanna Puwanarajah, Abigail Graham and Tom Attenborough, who each receive a £1,000 award, funded by the Ian Ritchie Foundation.