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The Bush Theatre is a world-famous home for new plays and an internationally renowned champion of playwrights. They discover, nurture and produce the best new playwrights from the widest range of backgrounds, and present their work to the highest possible standards. They look for exciting new voices that tell contemporary stories with wit, style and passion and we champion work that is both provocative and entertaining.
“One of the most experienced prospectors of raw talent in Europe” – The Independent
The Bush has produced hundreds of groundbreaking premieres since its inception in 1972, many of them Bush commissions, and hosted guest productions by leading companies and artists from across the world.
'The Bush Theatre opened in April 1972 in the upstairs dining room of The Bush Hotel, Shepherds Bush Green. The room had previously served as Lionel Blair's dance studio.
Playwrights whose works have been performed at The Bush include: Stephen Poliakoff, Robert Holman, Tina Brown, Snoo Wilson, John Byrne, Ron Hutchinson, Terry Johnson, Beth Henley, Kevin Elyot, Doug Lucie, Dusty Hughes, Sharman McDonald, Billy Roche, Tony Kushner, Catherine Johnson, Philip Ridley, Richard Cameron, Jonathan Harvey, Richard Zajdlic, Naomi Wallace, David Eldridge, Conor McPherson, Joe Penhall, Helen Blakeman, Lucy Gannon, Mark O'Rowe and Charlotte Jones.
The theatre has also attracted major acting and directing talents including Bob Hoskins, Alan Rickman, Anthony Sher, Stephen Rea, Frances Barber, Lindsay Duncan, Brian Cox, Kate Beckinsale, Patricia Hodge, Simon Callow, Alison Steadman, Jim Broadbent, Tim Roth, Jane Horrocks, Gwen Taylor, Mike Leigh, Mike Figgis, Mike Newell and Richard Wilson. Victoria Wood and Julie Walters first worked together at The Bush, and Victoria wrote her first sketch on an old typewriter she found backstage.
In over 30 years, The Bush has won over one hundred awards and recently received The Peggy Ramsay Foundation Project Award 2002. Bush plays, including most recently The Glee Club, have transferred to the West End. Off-Broadway transfers include Howie the Rookie and Resident Alien. Film adaptations include Beautiful Thing and Disco Pigs. Bush productions have toured throughout Britain, Europe, North America and Asia, most recently Stitching, adrenalin... heart (representing the UK in the Tokyo International Arts Festival, 2004) and The Glee Club (UK National Tour, Autumn 2004).
Every year The Bush receives over fifteen hundred scripts through the post, and reads them all.
According to The Sunday Times:
''What happens at The Bush today is at the very heart of tomorrow's theatre''
That's why we read all the scripts and will continue to do so.