London’s New Diorama Theatre, one of the UK’s most significant agenda-setting independent theatre studios, today announces award winning director and programmer Bec Martin as its next Artistic Director and Chief Executive Officer.
Bec Martin is an Off-West End Award winning director, programmer, and was most recently the inaugural Head of Programming at VAULT Festival. Under her artistic tenure, VAULT Festival grew in both audience and artistic reach, with a particularly marked increase in diversity, growing global majority-led shows from 12% in 2019 to 37% in 2023. Martin has pioneered engagement and community work at Orange Tree Theatre and Arcola Theatre, winning the Adiaha Antigha Award for Most Imaginative Approach to Outreach and in 2019 was named one of Hackney’s 100 most influential women. Martin has supported thousands of theatre-makers, artists and practitioners in their early careers and is particularly passionate about pathways from emerging to established artist. Her own work has been performed at the RSC, Soho Theatre, Arcola Theatre, Orange Tree Theatre, Sydney Theatre Company, Griffin Theatre Company and internationally.
Chair of the NDT board Philip Graham says “I am absolutely delighted that Bec Martin has agreed to join New Diorama as our next Artistic Director and CEO. She was the standout candidate from a rigorous selection process attracting many high-quality applicants. Bec shares our commitment to supporting emerging companies and artists, has a strong background in working with London’s diverse communities, and will bring the energy, ideas and passion needed to lead NDT successfully into the future.”
Speaking on her appointment Bec Martin says “I could not be more thrilled to be appointed Artistic Director at New Diorama, one of the UK’s most important and influential new work theatres. Under David’s unparalleled stewardship, NDT has rewritten the rulebook and established itself as the place where new theatrical voices can find space, support and a foothold into the industry. It’s a heavy mantle to take up, but I’m so honoured to be entrusted with it. Post-pandemic, David and the team have given the industry a chance to think, listen, empathise and dream. I am proud to be leading the organisation into the actions that follow that intake of breath.”
New Diorama Theatre is a pioneering London studio theatre, home for the country’s best independent theatre companies and ensembles, recently winning both the Critic’s Circle Venue Award 2023 and The Stage Fringe Theatre of the Year 2022. Since opening in 2010, New Diorama’s work has also received three prestigious Peter Brook Awards, ten Off-West End Awards including Off-West End Artistic Director of the Year and The Stage Innovation Prize. Work commissioned and produced at NDT frequently tours nationally and internationally, including regular transfers Off-Broadway. In 2022, NDT’s premiere production of For Black Boys Who Considered Suicide When The Hue Gets Too Heavy transferred to The Royal Court Theatre Downstairs for an extended, sold-out run before moving to the West End; while previous NDT commission Operation Mincemeat also made their West End transfer in 2023 and continues to play at the Fortune Theatre.
Martin will take over from David Byrne in January 2024 when, after more than a decade of leadership at NDT, he becomes Artistic Director of the Royal Court Theatre.