Carl Grose to become Deputy Artistic Director at Kneehigh

Carl Grose

Carl Grose

Kneehigh today announced that Carl Grose will be become Deputy Artistic Director for the company working alongside Artistic Director and Founder Mike Shepherd.

For the past twenty four years Carl Grose has worked with Kneehigh as both actor and writer and is currently an Associate Artist for the company. He is recognised as one of the UK’s leading voices in contemporary theatre.  Carl will take up the newly created position on 1st November 2018.

Carl Grose said ‘I’ve been a life-long fan of Kneehigh since the first time saw them at the age of thirteen. I was instantly inspired and immediately obsessed. I wanted to make theatre like them.  So it is a strange thrill and a somewhat surreal honour to announce that I will be joining artistic director Mike Shepherd as deputy Artistic Director as of November. This was never a plan. But it certainly feels like a very natural next step with a company that has survived by evolving and adapting and finding bold new directions to sail in. 

Over the past six years Mike and I have already been exploring a new way of working, with shows like Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other love songs), The Tin Drum and most recently, Ubu Karaoke. We want to build on this relationship between us and continue to tell stories with and for the people that make Kneehigh the extraordinary company it is.  Stories that will profoundly resonate with audiences everywhere, growing from our roots in Cornwall and reaching out to the the wider world. As with all good Kneehigh stories, I cannot wait to see what happens next…”

 Artistic Director Mike Shepherd said ‘Carl and I have enjoyed working together for a long time but, more importantly we love working together now!  In the past few years we’ve celebrated risk and the shows we have made have taken us in wild new directions.  Carl is already a fellow adventurer but now officially joins me as Deputy Artistic Director as we face the challenges and excitements of the future.  We’ll keep pushing the boat out, so watch out for the shows’ 

 Chair of Kneehigh’s Board of Directors, Professor Alan Livingston said ‘I am delighted that Carl will become Deputy Artistic Director. He is very passionate about Kneehigh and has made an enormous contribution to its collective creative genius. In bringing together the remarkable talents of Mike Shepherd and Carl I am very confident that the future of the company will be brighter and more innovative than ever”’ 

 Carl Grose’s first role with Kneehigh was to play Eddy Carter in Nick Darke’s The King of Prussia.  Carl has also performed in numerous Kneehigh shows such as The Riot (National Theatre), Nights at the Circus (Lyric Hammersmith), Cymbeline (RSC), and Blast (Tour).

Carl’s writing credits for the company has taken in many of Kneehigh’s biggest hits including the much loved and hugely successful Tristan & Yseult.  Other many credits include The BacchaeBlast! Wagstaffe the Wind-up BoyCymbelineHansel and Gretel and The Wild Bride.  Most recently Carl wrote the critically acclaimed musical adaptation of The Tin Drum and adapted and co-directed this summer’s riotous hit at the Asylum, Ubu Karaoke!His reimagining of John Gay’s infamous The Beggar’s Opera was retold as Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other love songs) and has enjoyed sold-out runs on tour.  It will be revived in 2019, opening at the Lyric Hammersmith in May, as part of a UK and International tour with dates to be announced soon.

Carl is also an established writer outside of the company with such hits as the stage musical The Grinning Man, which enjoyed both critical and commercial success, having its premiere at Bristol Old Vic as part of the theatre’s 250th Anniversary season before transferring to Trafalgar Studios in London’s West End.  His plays include Grand Guignol, Superstition MountainHorse Piss for Blood49 Donkeys Hanged and The Kneebone Cadillac.  Other work includes The Dark Philosophers and Never Try This At Home for Told by an Idiot, Oedipussy (Spymonkey), Wormy Close (Soho Theatre), The 13 Midnight Challenges of Angelus Diablo (RSC at Latitude), Alaska (Black Fish) and The Hartlepool Monkey for Gyre & Gimble.