RSC parting is such sweet sorrow

BECTU has welcomed the departure of the Royal Shakespeare's Adrian Noble.

Noble, the company's artistic director, has announced his resignation from the RSC to pursue commercial theatre projects, leaving behind two controversial reorganisations which he pushed through.

Closure of the Royal Shakespeare Company's London base at the Barbican took BECTU members to the brink of industrial action last year, while Noble's ambition to demolish the RSC's theatre in Stratford prompted the resignation of several governors.

The union is now calling for both initiatives to be reconsidered in an effort to limit the damage inflicted on jobs and the RSC's reputation.

News release

Adrian Noble's resignation: good riddance says BECTU

BECTU is demanding a review of the recent policy changes at the Royal Shakespeare Company in the wake of artistic director Adrian Noble's resignation.

Assistant General Secretary Gerry Morrissey commented: "Adrian Noble has done a massive amount of damage to the RSC product in his 10 years as artistic director. His policies have caused the loss of more than 100 jobs and created instability and low morale, instead of the confidence and foresight required to produce the world class productions that our members want.At least he will now be able to concentrate on the commercial theatre sector which has been taking up so much of his time and energy while the RSC has been in turmoil"

His two most damaging initiatives were to leave the Barbican Centre, thus depriving the RSC of a permanent London home and leading to more touring productions, and to reduce the number of new productions in a season at Stratford.

"Adrian Noble pressed the RSC governors to adopt these proposals and they went through despite many governors being against them. He has now jumped ship and left the RSC wondering how to manage two damaging initiatives without the one person who was pushing for them.His decision to leave the company shows how little faith he has in his own artistic vision for the RSC and shows that BECTU members were correct in their opposition" added Morrissey. "We are therefore asking the governors to reconsider these unpopular, damaging and uneconomic proposals immediately."


Further information: Willy Donaghy at BECTU on 020 7437 8506

24th April 2002

25 April 2002