Red Ladder Theatre Collection

Scope and Content

The archive comprises material relating to the Red Ladder Theatre Company, from the early 1970s to the current date. It includes administrative files and company documents, programmes, posters, press cuttings and records for educational and community projects. There are numerous scripts, stage management and production material including prompt scripts, props lists, technical drawings and photographs. There is also material relating to the staging of touring productions. Audio-visual and digital media includes CDs, videotapes, cassette tapes, DVDs and mini discs.

Administrative / Biographical History

Red Ladder is a highly regarded radical theatre company with 49 years of history. Founded in 1968, the company is acknowledged as one of Britain's leading national touring companies producing new theatre, contributing to social change and global justice. It started as a collective of theatre makers making street theatre in 1968 – most notably joining the anti-Vietnam War protests in Grosvenor Square led by Vanessa Redgrave. Since that time the company has been an important influence on British political theatre and indeed the wider theatre industry. Notable artists who began their career with Red Ladder include Michael Attenborough, Rona Munro, Meera Syal, Chris Reason, Jenny Sealey, David Edgar. The current artistic director of The Bush, Madani Younis started his career at Director of Asian Theatre School, a Red Ladder project. The company moved to Leeds in 1973 where it sits beside the mainstream theatres in the city. Born into an era of riots, demonstrations and revolts, Red Ladder continues to fight, to entertain, and to agitate in as equal measures as possible. Its archive is therefore extremely important to the history of theatre nationally and especially to the city of Leeds where, as a radical theatre company, it is unique.

Access Information

This collection is subject to various access conditions. Please see individual catalogue descriptions for further details on access.

Conditions Governing Use

Some parts of this collection are in copyright. Photocopies or digital images of the material in copyright can be supplied for private study purposes only. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain the copyright holder's permission for reproduction of copyright material for purposes other than research or private study. Guidance is available on tracing copyright status and ownership.