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Meet our Staff Director Lee Hart

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Meet our staff director Lee Hart as he talks about directing the Young Company in their latest production of Buckets.

Lee has been the resident director at the Theatre Royal Plymouth for two years working on a number of fantastic productions including Eulogy, Mended, Boots at the Door, 18 and In my dreams I dream I’m dreaming. Whilst also supporting our practitioners through mentoring and professional development.

Lee’s previous productions with the theatre have been devised pieces or created with a writer. Buckets, however has needed a different approach in the rehearsal room as it has been the first production Lee has worked on at the theatre which was already an existing script.

Lee is soon to pass the baton on to the next Staff Director as he moves on from the Theatre Royal Plymouth. Find out more about Lee’s final production in the role of staff director as he reveals what it is like to work with the Young Company in this short interview:

What is your favourite part of working with the Young Company?
The energy and vitality in the room! They are full of ideas which makes my job really easy.

What is the rehearsal process like for a Young Company production?
Well I’m sure each production has its own unique process. This is the second Young Company show that I’ve directed and the first, the half girl, was a devised project. Working with a strong script like Buckets provides its own rhythm and structure. For the past 2 weeks we have met as a company each day at 10am for a thorough physical and vocal warm-up, and exercises that develop our ensemble skills and bring us together as a company. Then for the rest of the day we work through the play, scene by scene – perhaps covering about 6 scenes per day. By the end of each week we will have worked through the entire play, finding new layers with each visit. Week 3 will see some fine tuning and week 4 technical rehearsal, dress rehearsal and performances.

Describe a typical day of work for you.
I arrive at TR2 at about 9am, catch up on emails, make some coffee, stretch out with some yoga for 10 minutes, and then at 9.45am catch up with my assistant director and the stage management team about the day ahead. Between 10am – 4pm we are in rehearsals, then at 4pm we will perhaps have a production meeting or I will catch up with members of the extended team, such as lighting designer, sound designer about any ideas we need to discuss.

What have been the hurdles you have come across with this particular piece?
The challenge with Buckets, which has so many small, seemingly unrelated scenes, is to find a through line and maintain the connection to the underlying theme throughout.

What is your favourite part of the show Buckets?
The brilliant mix of comedy, absurdism and gut-wrenching honesty in the writing.

Can you name 3 things that would be on your bucket list?
To sail around the world with my family.
To walk around the entire coastline of the UK.
To make an album with my eight year old son Eli, who is just learning to play guitar.

What is your favourite thing about Plymouth and working in the South West?
Being close to so many great beaches.

In a play of your life who plays you?
Tom Waits

Don’t miss Buckets while it’s in Plymouth next week from the 24th – 27th August.


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