All About Us

Yvonne Murphy

Yvonne Murphy

Artistic Director & Executive Producer

  • Clore Fellow
  • Associate Artist of Wales Millennium Centre
  • Associate Artist Theatr Iolo
  • Arts Council Wales Creative Agent
  • Arts Council Wales Creative Practitioner
  • Trustee of AWEN Bridgend Cultural Trust
  • Councillor – Penarth Town Council & Chair of Events Committee
  • Founding Chair of the Cardiff Chapter of UK wide cultural movement

Yvonne believes passionately that access to Arts & Culture is a fundamental right of every citizen and that Arts and Culture must form a central role within British Society and specifically within Education. Yvonne uses theatre and the arts to empower, inform, challenge  and inspire change and has worked for many of Britain’s leading Theatre Company’s and organisations specialising in work with young people and training including the Royal National Theatre, The Shakespeare Schools Festival, Plymouth Theatre Royal, The English Shakespeare Company and Welsh National Opera and RWCMD. Yvonne is also a Creative Agent for the Arts Council of Wales Lead Creative Schools Scheme.

Yvonne read Drama at Manchester University (1988-91) before going on to train as an actor at The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (1991-92) and as a teacher of English & Drama at University College, London. (1995-6) Yvonne has been a freelance theatre producer and director since 1992, working across the UK and Internationally.

Yvonne was a runner up of the very first James Menzies-Kitchen Award and her theatre directing credits include Richard III, Henry VI & Romeo & Juliet (Omidaze/Wales Millennium Centre), Things Beginning With M (Omidaze Tour), Sweetness & Badness (Welsh National Opera ), Romeo & Juliet (English Shakespeare Company), A Night Under Canvas (Sherman Theatre & HTV), The Hamlet Machine (Plymouth Theatre Royal), Three Birds Alighting On A Field (Whitworth Art Gallery); The Donahue Sisters (Rondo, Bath & Edinburgh Fringe).

Yvonne has worked in both the Arts and Corporate sector and secured and managed large-scale funding from the Arts Council of Wales, The European Social Fund, Paul Hamlyn, Esmee Fairbairn and the Foyle Foundations. Yvonne was the Arts Council of Wales Fellow on the Clore Leadership programme 2013/14 where she was mentored by Jude Kelly OBE. For her secondment, as part of this intensive development programme, Yvonne was Strategic Lead for the National Arts & Cultural Movement – What Next? This post continued beyond the Clore Programme through until Autumn 2014 and Yvonne remains actively involved as Co-Chair and Founder of the Cardiff Chapter of What Next?

Yvonne has nurtured over the years a diverse portfolio career in the cultural sector ranging from being commissioned to write a report for the BBC Archives Development Commissioner to most recently facilitating and chairing Open Space sessions and subsequent steering groups for The National Dance Company Wales and researching and writing a Creative Learning Strategy for Theatr Iolo.

Yvonne’s producing credits include Sticks & Stones (Film –video distribution & Leeds International Film Festival) Theatre –, Omidaze Productions, Dirty Protest, Paul Evans Circus Choreographer/Director (aka Flying Diplodicus) and for Endangered Species Productions including Edinburgh, London and European tours and taking the first ever theatre production to the House of Commons.

Yvonne returned to South Wales from London in 2005 where she now lives with her husband and three children.

Dick Johns aka Bradnum

Writer & Actor

Dick read English at Birmingham University and trained as an actor at The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and is a co-founder of The Custard Factory Theatre Company. Dick’s acting credits include The Office (BBC) Romeo & Juliet (English Shakespeare Co.), Malvolio in Twelfth Night (York Theatre Royal) Lightspeed From Pembrokeshire (Dirty Protest) & the Dame in various Pantomimes.

He is a regular voice in plays on Radio 4 and was for some years a regular compere on the London Comedy circuit. Dick is a qualified teacher of English & Drama (Institute of Education, UCL) and a much sought after professional Role Player, Facilitator and Writer.

Dick is award-winning writer and playwright and has published his first collection of short stories. currently working on his second one man show. (Chapter, Cardiff September 2018)

Dick Johns aka Bradnum

Where it all began

Omidaze was founded in 2008 when we printed some postcards delivered them to all the schools in our area and designed and delivered our first Shakespeare Summer School, a fun and interactive introduction to Shakespeare and Drama for 7-11 year olds. It sold out and received outstanding feedback.

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Our first production Things Beginning with M began with a week of R&D supported by the Sherman Theatre in 2008 and following pilot performances in Chapter, Cardiff and the Windsor Pub in Penarth in 2009 and further R&D, in 2010 we toured across Wales in Autumn 2012 to sell-out venues and great reviews, culminating in performances in the Arcola Theatre Tent in London.

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