1st Edition

Frantic Assembly

By Mark Evans, Mark Smith Copyright 2021
    196 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    196 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Frantic Assembly have had a powerful and continuing influence on the popularisation of devising practices in contemporary theatre-making. Their work blends brave and bold physical theatre with exciting new writing, and they have collaborated with some of the leading theatre-makers in the UK. The company’s impact reaches throughout the world, particularly through their extensive workshop and education programmes, as well as their individual and collective impact as movement directors on landmark, internationally successful productions such as Black Watch and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.

    This volume reveals the background to, and work of, a major influence on twentieth and twenty-first century performance. Frantic Assembly is the first book to combine:

    • an overview of the history of the company since its foundation in 1994
    • an analysis of the key ideas underpinning the company’s work
    • a critical commentary on two key productions – Hymns by Chris O’Connell (1999) and Stockholm by Bryony Lavery (2007)
    • a detailed description of a Frantic Assembly workshop, offering an introduction to how the company works.

    As a first step towards critical understanding, and as an initial exploration before going on to further, primary research, Routledge Performance Practitioners offer unbeatable value for today’s student.

    1. Biographical and Artistic Content: A ‘Frantic Method’?;  2. Key Writings, Principles, and Ideas: ‘Always Forward, Never Back';  3. Ideas in Production: Hymns and Stockholm;  4. Practical Work: A Frantic Assembly Workshop; Conclusion


    Mark Evans is Professor of Theatre Training and Education at Coventry University. He trained with Jacques Lecoq and Philippe Gaulier in Paris and has published widely on performer training and physical theatre, including: Movement Training for the Modern Actor (2009), The Routledge Companion to Jacques Lecoq (2016) and Performance Movement and the Body (2019).

    Mark Smith is a Lecturer in Theatre at the University of York. His research examines the interplay between processes of devising, writing and physicality in contemporary UK theatre. He has worked as a theatre director and dramaturg, and he writes regularly for the British Theatre Guide.