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Philip Dart biography

philip dart biography

After gaining a degree in Drama at Hull University, Philip’s early directing career took him to the Nuffield Theatre, Southampton, the Plymouth Theatre Company and the Soho Poly Theatre in London. From 1987 to 2012 he was the Artistic Director of the Channel Theatre Company and subsequently Chalkfoot Theatre Arts, with both companies receiving regular funding from Arts Council England. He now works as a freelance Theatre Director in the UK and Europe.

Philip’s first foray into national touring began with two UK touring premieres: Larry Kramer’s pioneering play, THE NORMAL HEART and Anthony Minghella’s MADE IN BANGKOK.  There followed a number of highly successful national touring productions including THE WOMAN IN BLACK; THE HAUNTED HOTEL(Philip’s own successful adaptation of a little known Wilkie Collins novel); a revival of Terence Rattigan’s WHILE THE SUN SHINES and Tom McGrath’s play LAUREL AND HARDY (a co-production with Buxton Opera House).

In the mid-Noughties he set up the acclaimed Chalkfoot Theatre Arts, undertaking a wide programme of work for small-scale theatres and rural community venues in the south east.  His work for Chalkfoot included a an original play, RUNNING FOR GLORY (about the 1924 Paris Olympics), a new adaptation of THE PRISONER OF ZENDA and an innovative staging of Erskine Childers’ Edwardian spy novel THE RIDDLE OF THE SANDS that earned nominations for Best Director and Best Production in the Off West End awards following a run at London’s Jermyn Street Theatre.

Philip has also directed two in-house productions for the Festival Theatre, Malvern: Shaw’s ARMS AND THE MAN and a reworking of the musical, NIGHTINGALE.  In a freelance capacity he has directed Noel Coward’s FALLEN ANGELS for Pavilion Theatre and was co-director and co-adaptor of THE MYSTERIES AT CANTERBURY CATHEDRAL. 

For many years, Philip has written and directed the Pantomime at the Buxton Opera House and this Christmas has just celebrated his 25th year at the venue. He enjoys directing drama students and in recent years has worked at ALRA, The Court Theatre Training Company and Arts University Bournemouth.  Last summer he directed John Van Druten’s LONDON WALL for the Drama Studio London and will shortly return to direct WOMEN OF TWILIGHT.

Philip has been a regular director at the English Theatre in Vienna for over ten years, where productions have included CHARLEY’S AUNT; LEND ME A TENOR; THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST; WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION; MOONLIGHT AND MAGNOLIAS; FOX ON THE FAIRWAY; PYGMALION and HELLO/GOODBYE.  He has also directed George Bernard Shaw’s CANDIDA and N.J.Crisp’s classic thriller DANGEROUS OBSESSION for the English Theatre of Hamburg.

See Script Bank for a list of plays written and adapted by Philip Dart.  For more plays click here:

The image above is from Philip Dart's play "Running for Glory"