Call Out: JMK Victoria Wood Bursary and Assistant Director Opportunity

The JMK Trust in partnership with Manchester Royal Exchange is offering a JMK Victoria Wood Assistant Director Bursary to enable the recipient to assist joint Artistic Director Roy Alexander Weise. The bursary, funded by the Victoria Wood Foundation, will provide a learning and training opportunity for a talented emerging director, based in the Greater Manchester area who has demonstrated a commitment to directing and a passion for theatre making.

We are looking for an assistant director for Roy Alexander Weise’s upcoming production of The Mountaintop by Katori Hall. The show will run from 25th September to 30th October at Manchester Royal Exchange.


Written by Katori Hall

Directed by Roy Alexander Weise

Joint Artistic Director Roy Alexander Weise makes his Royal Exchange debut with a brand-new production of Katori Hall‘s Olivier Award-Winning play THE MOUNTAINTOP. Set during the height of America’s Civil Rights Movement, Hall imagines the eve of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Camae, a sexy, sassy, foul-mouthed maid, brings him a cup of coffee and the night takes an unexpected turn. This laugh-out-loud, visceral and powerful drama will play in rep with GLEE & ME.

Roy Alexander Weise MBE is joint Artistic Director of the Royal Exchange and won the JMK Award 2016 with The Mountaintop, which ran at the Young Vic in October-November 2016, before touring the UK in 2018.

Roy’s other theatre credits include: BR’ER COTTON (Theatre 503) and NINE NIGHT (National Theatre), HERETIC VOICES (Arcola Theatre); JEKYLL AND HYDE (National Youth Theatre); DEAD DON’T FLOSS (National Theatre); THE UGLY ONE (Park Theatre, Buckland Theatre Company); THE DARK (Fuel & Ovalhouse); ZERO FOR THE YOUNG DUDES (Young & Talented in association with NT Connections); PRIMETIME (Royal Court, Jerwood Theatre); and STONE FACE (Finborough Theatre). At the start of 2020, Roy was awarded an MBE for his services to drama.

The assistant director will need to be available for:

Interview: during week of 19th July
Rehearsals starting 23rd August
Tech 20th September
Preview 25th September
Press 30th September
And for some shows during the run tbc – closes 30th October 2021

As Assistant Director, your duties will include:

  • To provide general assistance to the Director.
  • As agreed with the Director, to carry out any research that will inform and benefit the production.
  • To observe rehearsals and have input in discussions and production meetings.
  • To be able to lead warm-ups and step in for the director in leading rehearsals when necessary.
  • To assist the company in documenting the rehearsal process for the purposes of marketing, archiving and evaluating the project through blogs, social media and other forms as agreed.
  • To observe and assist the Director in the production week as required.
  • To attend and participate in post-show discussions by mutual agreement with the Producer.
  • To support the company whilst the play is in performance as agreed with the Director and Stage Manager, including watching and noting the production.
  • To be part of conversations and play an active part of the process around additional activities taking place around The Mountaintop
  • Any further duties as required by the Director.
  • The bursary recipient will demonstrate a commitment to living and making theatre in the Greater Manchester area and will be prepared to join our directors group at HOME Manchester for workshops and events.

Who we’re looking for

  • Someone who can demonstrate a commitment to directing and a passion for theatre making.
  • Someone who is organised, confident, flexible, calm and approachable.
  • A good team player who is willing to work collaboratively with the team around the show (creatives, actors, stage managers and staff).
  • Someone who is living in or originally from the Greater Manchester area with a commitment to making work in the region.
  • We are particularly keen to receive applications from Black and ethnically diverse people and those who identify as living with a disability.
  • As an equal opportunities employer, Manchester Royal Exchange welcomes applications from all suitably qualified persons. However, as Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) and disabled people are currently under-represented within our organisation, we would particularly welcome applications from BAME and disabled applicants. All appointments will be made on merit.


The JMK Victoria Wood Bursary consists of £2,350.


How to apply

Please send a CV and covering letter to by 12 noon on Friday 2nd July.

Please detail:

  • Why you are interested in working with Roy Alexander Weise on this production of The Mountaintop by Katori Hall
  • Your relevant experience and what you can bring to the role
  • How this assisting opportunity will contribute to your professional development
  • Your commitment to living and making theatre in Greater Manchester.
  • Alternatively you can send a sound recording or video detailing the same information.

Shortlisted applicants will be invited for an interview with Roy Alexander Weise and a representative of JMK during week of 19th July

If you have any questions or if you require any adaptations to participate fairly in the recruitment process please contact


Royal Exchange Theatre VALUES AND BEHAVIOURS

The Royal Exchange are invested in the people they work with and their values and behaviours. They want all their team to display and live by the following principles:


We will develop the appetite to learn and grow, so that we can be truly open to anyone and everyone.
We will be collaborative, flexible and adaptable in how we do things and get ‘stuck in’ if we see others need help.
We will welcome innovation and show entrepreneurship where we can.

We will ask difficult questions, feel empowered to do so and give and receive feedback, even if it is difficult to say or hear. This is vital for equality, diversity and inclusion.
We will be empathic and demonstrate emotional intelligence.
We will learn to apologise if we have done something wrong – and move on.

We take ownership of our own part and are accountable for our own decisions.
We trust others to be responsible for what they do and how they do it to drive the aims of RET and its future.
We will challenge people and practice, as well as support them, to achieve our aims especially in our active commitment to removing discrimination.




Published on:
15 Jun 2021
Opportunity deadline:
02 Jul 2021


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