Benedict Andrews

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Now based in Reykjavik, Benedict Andrews is established as one of the most sought-after Australian directors, playwright and published poet of his generation.  His debut feature film, UNA, stars Rooney Mara and Ben Mendelsohn and is based on the play BLACKBIRD by David Harrower. The film had its world premiere in September 2016 at the Toronto International Film Festival ahead of a wide international release.

Benedict’s West End production of CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF at Young Vic opened in July 2017. In April 2016, Benedict transferred his Young Vic Theatre production of A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE starring Gillian Anderson and Ben Foster to St Ann’s in New York City. It originally premiered at London’s Young Vic Theatre in 2014. In 2014, his Sydney Theatre Company’s production of THE MAIDS starring Cate Blanchett and Isabelle Huppert toured to New York City as part of the Lincoln Centre Festival after its original 2012 Sydney season. His play GLORIA enjoyed its world premiere at Griffin Theatre Company in Sydney in September 2016.

He opened a new production of LA BOHEME at Dutch National Opera in early 2015, a co-production with English National Opera.  His prior ENO production Detlev Glanert’s CALIGULA was nominated for an Olivier Best New Opera Production award in 2012 and toured to Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires in 2014. He is currently in rehearsals for MEDEA at Komische Oper opening in May 2017. Other recent opera productions include: STIFFELIO at Oper Frankfurt, Verdi’s MACBETH at Royal Danish Opera; LE NOZZE DI FIGARO Opera Australia and THE FIERY ANGEL at Komische Oper, Berlin.

His Young Vic production of THREE SISTERS won the London Critics Circle Best Director award in 2012.  His STC production of GROSS UND KLEIN won the 2011 Helpmann Best Director award (his third) and toured to Théâtre de la Ville (Paris), The Barbican (London), the Wiener Festwochen (Vienna) and the Ruhrfestspiele (Recklinghausen).

His marathon Shakespeare cycle THE WAR OF THE ROSES, which he adapted with Tom Wright, was the theatrical highlight of the 2009 Sydney and Perth festivals and received six Helpmann Awards, including Best Play and Best Direction of a Play as well as five Sydney Theatre Awards for Best Direction and Best Mainstage Production.  Further productions for Sydney Theatre Company include THE CITY, THE SEASON AT SARSPARILLA, JULIUS CAESAR, FAR AWAY, ENDGAME, LIFE IS A DREAM, OLD MASTERS, THREE SISTERS, LA DISPUTE, MR KOLPERT, ATTEMPTS ON HER LIFE and FIREFACE.

From 2004 to 2010, he worked extensively at the Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz, Berlin where his productions include SAVED, A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE, THE DOG, THE NIGHT, THE KNIFE, CLEANSED, DRUNK ENOUGH TO SAY I LOVE YOU, STONING MARY, THE UGLY ONE and BLACKBIRD.

For Belvoir Street Theatre, Sydney, he has directed THE SEAGULL, WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, THE CHAIRS, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, THE THREEPENNY OPERA and MEASURE FOR MEASURE, which was awarded Best Direction, Best Stage Design and Best Mainstage Play at the 2010 Sydney Theatre Awards.

At Iceland’s National Theatre Benedict has directed MACBETH and KING LEAR, which won 6 Gríman Awards, including Best Direction and Play of the Year.

Benedict’s first original play EVERY BREATH was produced at Belvoir Street Theatre in 2012 and subsequently translated into Portuguese by Jorge Silva Melo and produced by Artistas Unidos in Lisbon 2013, directed by John Romão. The Portuguese production was nominated for Time Out Lisbon’s Best Play award.  Benedict’s first volume of poetry LENS FLARE was published in 2014 by Pitt Street Poetry and was awarded the Mary Gilmore Award in 2016 for the most outstanding poetry first collection published in Australia. In 2016 Oberon Books published five of Benedict’s original plays as BENEDICT ANDREWS: COLLECTED PLAYS.