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Mark Powell Artistic Director
Mark leads the company and chooses the plays, projects, artists and young people we work with. He also directs some of our professional and youth productions. Mark first worked for Prime Theatre from 2001-4 as Youth & Education Director, then (after ten years as Associate Director at Salisbury Playhouse) he returned to Prime in 2014. He is a school governor at Drove Primary School and has been a trustee and chair for several arts charities. Mark writes plays and musicals, the most recent being ‘The Teacup Poisoner’ for The Egg, where he also an Incubator Artist. Mark is a member of Arts Council England's South West Area Council, he is also the UK International Rep for ASSITEJ and Vice Chair of Theatre for Young Audiences U.K. Mark is an Arts Award Adviser. He has a British Sign Language Level 1 qualification and is studying for Level 2.
Sarah Wrixon Company Manager
Sarah is our Company Manager, she looks after the day to day running of Prime Theatre but also takes care of all aspects of the productions we produce. Sarah loves technical theatre and gives her spare time to many local performances. Sarah has stage managed and produced several Prime productions. Sarah leads Prime Youth Theatre’s Technical Crew. She is an Arts Award Adviser. Sarah is studying for a British Sign Language Level 1 qualification.
Marnie Forbes Eldridge Associate Director
Marnie is an Associate Director. She looks after IMPACT, Prime's regional creative skills and Arts Award projects for young people Not In Education, Employment or Training. She has directed, acted and written for and about theatre for over twenty years and had a creative relationship with Prime Theatre for fourteen years as well as working with the Royal Shakespeare Company, RADA, regional theatres such as Salisbury Playhouse and The Everyman, Cheltenham. She has a Masters in Theatre Studies and has lectured at University of the West of England and taught in various educational establishments. Marnie's focus is actor training, applied theatre and storytelling.
Aaron Parsons Associate Director
Aaron is one of Prime's two Associate Directors and leads Prime Youth Theatre, as well as working with schools, and directing productions. Aaron started off his arts journey at 11 years old by joining a youth dance company that toured Europe. He became a young ambassador for the arts, speaking at political conferences and education events to promote the importance of access to the arts for young people. Aaron then joined a youth theatre and fell in love with drama, studying Theatre, TV and Film at Aberystwyth University. He has a Masters Degree in Directing from Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. Aaron is studying for his British Sign Language Level 1 qualification.
Carli Green Young Artist
Carli is our Young Artist and is also a member of Prime Youth Theatre. He supports and leads workshops with youth theatre and Prime Projects. He also appeared in our production of Butterfly for Early Years. Carli went to Swindon's Eldene Primary School and the Commonweal Secondary School where he now leads the schools after-school drama workshops. Carli supports our workshops for Trowbridge Young Company and at Larkrise Special School.
Emma Gray Young Producer
Emma is our Young Producer who is completing an apprenticeship with us, she leads on digital marketing and social media. Emma is completing the Gold Arts Award and already has the Bronze Arts Award.
Kirsty Winnan Artsmark & Arts Award Associate
Kirsty is our Artsmark and Arts Award Associate. Kirsty has a background in music, has been a school leader in both primary and secondary schools, a regional officer for Youth Music and a director of several arts education organisations. She is an experienced Arts Award trainer and adviser and also supports Artsmark schools. Kirsty was a Singing Leader for Prime's Singing Together radio production with BBC Wiltshire.
Abby Mansi Drama Practitioner
Abby is our practitioner working closely with Drove Primary School. Abby studied Drama and Music Theatre Performance before becoming a lead female vocalist for TED Talent. She is Musical Director of Swindon's BigSingThing, a large community choir as well as leading the Noteables and Songbirds vocal ensembles. She recently set up the Swindon Carers Centre Choir, focusing on well-being through singing together. She was a Singing Leader for Prime's Singing Together production with BBC Wiltshire.
Dominic Wolf Youth Theatre Practitioner
Dominic trained at the Royal Scottish Academy and the Oxford School of Drama (where he still runs workshops). He is a professional actor and workshop facilitator. He also tutors on audition technique and his area of expertise is method acting techniques. He leads Prime Youth Theatre workshops and community projects.
Claire Crawford Youth Theatre Practitioner
Claire leads Prime Youth Theatre workshops and is a theatre maker, producer and actor. She graduated from the University of Exeter in 2015 with a degree in Drama and has been producing and creating work ever since. She is a current member of the 12 strong 'Made in Bristol' theatre making development programme at Bristol Old Vic, and works with many different outreach groups in this capacity - as well as creating work with her company; INKBLOC Ensemble.
Olly Webb Trainee Director
Olly is a Trainee Director with Prime. He started his theatre journey when he was 14, getting involved in every aspect from acting, to directing, to technical. He works as both a director and actor, especially enjoying adapting ancient scripts to new situations, and devising new theatre. Recently he was Prime’s 3 Month Placement Regional Theatre Young Director Scheme. Olly is currently completing his Gold Arts Award. He is also a governor of Drove School and runs workshops for them.
Amaka Okafor Associate Artist
Amaka is an actor and theatre maker whose recent credits include Hamlet (in separate productions with Andrew Scott and Benedict Cumberbatch), The Little Mermaid (Shared Experience) and Glasgow Girls (National Theatre of Scotland). A previous Prime Theatre trustee, Amaka has also performed in our productions of Grimm Tales and The Wasp in the Wig. Amaka was a member of the BBC Radio Company and plays Kaz in The Archers.
Ben Buratta Associate Artist & Trustee
Ben is Artistic Director of Outbox Theatre and a full-time lecturer at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in Applied Theatre Practices. He has worked as a freelance director and workshop leader across many leading theatres and within a broad range of arts, community and education contexts. Ben is from Swindon and was once a member of Prime Youth Theatre. After studying at university he returned to Prime Theatre as the Youth Theatre Leader.
Sarah Butcher Associate Artist
Sarah is a director and producer and a founding member of Non Zero One, a collective of six artists making interactive performances that use technology to look at the role and responsibility of the audience. Their work has been commissioned by the Barbarian, Battersea Arts Centre, the National Theatre and the Science Museum. Originally from Swindon and a pupil at Kingsdown Secondary School, Sarah was a member of Prime Youth Theatre and the company's first young trustee. She created and directed ‘Last Thursday: A Verbatim Play’ with 200 South West Teenagers.
Ben Occhipinti Associate Artist
Ben is Associate Director at the Octagon Theatre, Bolton, where he was the resident director on the Regional Theatre Young Directors Scheme. Ben directs plays, musicals and opera. He is also a professional sound designer and composer. His own writing and compositions include The Teacup Poisoner (the egg),) Jack and the Beanstalk and Spread a Little Happiness (Salisbury Playhouse). For Prime Theatre Ben has worked on A Family Cookbook, This Secret Life, The Laramie Project, The Macbeth Curse, Singing Together and His Dark Materials.
Annie Rowe Trustee
Annie is an independent freelance Casting Director. She casts for theatre, film and tv and specialises in casting new writing projects for the theatre. A holder of a lifelong passion for the Arts, Annie trained as an actor at the National Youth Theatre and Royal Academy for Dramatic Art. She appeared in many theatre productions before becoming a Casting Director and a Trustee of Prime Theatre.
Paul Sandhurst Gregory Chair of Trustees
Paul graduated with a degree in architecture from Reading University, Berkshire and later joined a firm of surveyors in Swindon. He set up his own lettings firm before joining the board of Hamptons estate agents. As a volunteer, Paul has chaired Swindon Borough Council’s Equality Forum and Churchfields Academy. Paul has also been a member of Wessex’s Hate Crime Scrutiny panel, an Independent Advisor to Wiltshire’s Criminal Justice Board and worked as a magistrate. Paul is currently a director of Belgravia Lettings Ltd, Air Support Solutions and Swindon Heritage. Paul is a long-term supporter and funder of the arts.
Sue Welsh Trustee
Sue has been a Prime Theatre trustee for over 5 years. It was through her role as Head of Drama at Crowdys Hill School for pupils with complex needs that she first got to know the company. Sue also works as a freelance theatre practitioner specialising in disability performance and is currently training as a Sacred Clown.
Pete Horwat Trustee
Pete works in the electronics industry as a Sales Director and heads the Worldwide Sales Channels. Pete is Vice-Chair and advises on Prime Theatre on strategic business development. He is married with 3 daughters and 1 grandson. Pete enjoys spending time with his family, golf, walking, football, theatre, cinema and travelling.
Tracy Sullivan Trustee
Tracy has worked in the arts in Wiltshire for over 12 years in the strategic development across the county and as a venue director. Tracy is Director of Trowbridge Arts, a project developing a centre for arts, culture and heritage in Wiltshire’s county town. Based at Trowbridge Town Hall, Tracy's work includes a strong focus on the engagement and development of young people as performers and curators. Tracy has worked with Prime Theatre for over 10 years as a programmer and board member.
Emma Carter Trustee
Emma works in the IT & Telecoms industry as Sales & Marketing Director, and acts as the Finance Director for the Prime Trustees. When she was younger Emma was involved in lots of music projects and supports the difference creativity can make to a young person's aspirations.
Jamila Gavin Trustee
Jamila has been writing books for children for over 30 years, as well as plays for radio, television and theatre. Many of her works reflect her childhood in India. Her novel Coram Boy won the 2000 Whitbread Prize as Children's Book of the Year and a stage adaptation was produced by the National Theatre. She is also a patron of the Shakespeare Schools Festival.
Sharon Hodge Trustee
Sharon trained as an actor at Drama Centre London. She enjoyed a professional career as both an actor and director, appearing in and directing several Prime Theatre productions before becoming a dedicated theatre and education practitioner. She has designed and delivered theatre and performing arts course at all levels in both colleges and secondary schools. Sharon is currently Head of Performing Arts, Design and Technology in a large Wiltshire secondary school and sixth form college. She develops teaching and learning standards across the South West and is a member of Artsmad: Arts Council England’s Cultural Education Partnership in Swindon.
Marcus Lilley Trustee
Marcus works in the Marketing team at the Wyvern Theatre & Swindon Arts Centre. He was a member of Prime Youth Theatre for five years and has been a Trustee since 2013. He regularly writes about theatre companies uses video, projection and other technologies in his own performances.
Barbara Anscombe Trustee
Barb helps Prime create projects for Deaf children. She is Deaf and works as a Teaching Assistant with Deaf primary pupils. Barb is qualified at Level 6 in British Sign Language. She spends time supporting Swindon's Deaf community and is keen to encourage Deaf children to participate in theatre.
Daisy Prime Minister
Daisy has been a member for Prime Youth Theatre for four years, assists with workshops and has performed in The Laramie Project, The Odyssey and the Suffragette Project. Acting is really important to her and is looking to apply to drama school this year to help build her career and continue acting for the rest of her life.
Caitlin Prime Minister
Caitlin has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for six and a half years; she assists with workshops and has appeared in Ted's Tails, His Dark Materials, and Fitcher's Bird. She is passionate about the performing arts and would like to be an actress or drama teacher in the future.
Ellis Prime Minister
Ellis has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for eight years, he assists with workshops, produces promotional films, performed in The Box of Lost Secrets, and has both contributed as a writer and actor to The Odyssey. He aims to find a job in the future that feeds his creativity and allows him to express his ideas through the arts.
George Prime Minister
George is a member of Prime Youth Theatre and has appeared inThe Odyssey, the Old Town Light Switch On and Singing Together.
Vlad Prime Minister
Vlad has been a Prime Youth Member for 7 years. He has been in His Dark Materials, Hansel and Gretel, 2046 and The Odyssey.
Tom Prime Minister
Tom has been a Prime Youth Member for 3 years. He has been in the 2046 and The Odyssey.
Rachel Prime Minister
Rachel has been a part of Prime Youth Theatre for 3 years. She has been in 2046 , The Odsessy and The Old Town Light Switch on.
Poppy Prime Minister
Poppy has been with Prime Youth Theatre for one year.
Olivia Prime Minister
Olivia has been a part of Prime Youth Theatre for one year. She has taken part in a sharing event at the Shoebox Theatre for Greek Theatre.
Miles Prime Minister
Miles has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for two years. He has taken part in Grease , 2046 and The Odyssey.
Lissi Prime Minister
Lissi has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for one year. She loves drama, dance and animals.
Jarlath Prime Minister
Jarlath has been with Prime Youth Theatre for one term and has taken part in filming 2046.
Benny Prime Minister
Benny has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for 7 years. He has been in His Dark Materials, Hansel and Gretel, It Snows and Fletchers Bird.
Abi Prime Minister
Aby has been a Prime Youth Member for two years and has taken part in 2046, The Odyssey and the Lights Switch On.
Ella Prime Minister
Ella has been a member of Prime Youth Member for one year and has been in 2046.
Eve Prime Minister
Eve has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for 3 years. She has been in Flitcher’s Bird, His Dark Materials and The Odyssey.
Olivia Prime Minister
Olivia has been a Prime Youth Theatre member for one term. She loves acting and wants to become an actor or horse rider later in life.
Imogen Prime Minister
Imogen has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for a few years. She wants to be a writer and travel the world in a camper van when she is older.
Jeni Draper Associate Artist
Jeni is the newest Associate Artist at Prime Theatre. Jeni trained and worked as an actress for many years and then, in a particularly dry work period, she started learning BSL and over a few more years a new career path opened up to her and she became a qualified sign language interpreter who specialises in working in the Arts. It was a natural leap to combine both passions and become a theatre director. As well as a freelance directing career, she is the Artistic Director of Fingersmiths, a visual, physical theatre company that works with Deaf and hearing actors, presenting plays in both British Sign Language and spoken or written English. Fingersmiths is an Associate Company at the New Wolsey Theatre in Ipswich where the company are based.
Ethan Prime Minister
Ethan has been a member of Prime Youth Theatre for 7 and a half years; he is a workshop assistant for the 2 youngest prime groups, played the lead in Prime’s show Teds Tails, and is currently working on Prime’s latest show: Punk Rock. Ethan has been working in and around the theatre since he was 3 years old and he would like to continue doing so for the rest of the foreseeable future, be it as an actor, director, or teacher.
Prime Theatre is always keen to hear from actors, artists and technicians who are interested in our work and share our values.
We especially like meeting artists in or from the South West.
Casting opportunities appear on this page and are advertised through Spotlight, professional actors agencies and independent casting directors.
If you are a theatre student, young artist or new company we are keen to help support and develop you. Do invite us to see your work.
Please send CVs and other information to Mark Powell, Artistic Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
Prime Theatre is an Independent Theatre Council Approved Manager and uses union-approved contracts.