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Feb 28, 2020

Amy Leach is a theatre director and Associate Director at Leeds Playhouse, currently working on a new version of Oliver Twist.

This new adaption is by Bryony Lavery, and it’s being staged by Leeds Playhouse in collaboration with the Ramps on the Moon consortium, a partnership between six National Portfolio Organisation theatres and Graeae Theatre. Ramps on the Moon aims to create change within the UK theatre industry in terms of the inclusion and integration of deaf and disabled audiences and theatre-makers.

Benjamin Wilson is one of Ramps on the Moon’s Agents for Change. He’s a cast member in this latest production, and has had a key role in developing creative approaches to audio description for this and a number of other shows he’s worked on at Leeds Playhouse and Sheffield Theatres.

Amy and Ben joined Mark Smith towards the end of their rehearsal period to discuss the Ramps on the Moon initiative, the opportunities opened up by creative approaches to access for D/deaf and visually impaired audiences and performers, and the reasons behind Amy’s choice of Dickens’s work for her latest project.

Oliver Twist plays Leeds Playhouse’s Quarry Theatre from 28 February to 21 March 2020, ahead of a UK tour to Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Nottingham Playhouse, Sheffield Theatres, New Wolsey Theatre Ipswich and Theatre Royal Stratford East, which are all part of the Ramps on the Moon consortium alongside Graeae, the UK’s leading disabled-led theatre company.

(Oliver Twist rehearsal images of director Amy Leach and of Brooklyn Melvin and Benjamin Wilson, credit Anthony Robling.)