Emma Rucastle

Founder of ELART Productions

I have been passionate about theatre for as long as I can remember.

As a child/teenager I acted in countless school and community shows - most notably playing Abigail in a village production of The Crucible at the same time as completing my A-levels. Following this, I studied English and Theatre Studies at Lancaster University and then gained my PGCE and taught English and Drama for 9 years, becoming Head of Drama for the final 6 of these. While teaching, I studied for - and gained - an MA in Theatre Directing from Middlesex University, spending an incredible month at GITIS drama school in Moscow, for one module in Chekhov and Stanilsavski.

In 2008, I took the plunge into freelance life and founded ELART Productions. The first ELART project was a three original/devised play commission from Lancaster Cathedral for their 150th anniversary in 2009. These three plays used a core of professional actors with a community chorus and lots of music. I got the taste for this kind of work and many ELART shows and workshops have followed this pattern since: site-specific, bespoke community productions with a professional core.

I am now also a co-founder of The Rose Company, an all-female classical theatre company whose first production in 2013 was of the earliest known dramatic work by a woman in English: Lady Jane Lumley's Iphigenia. I very much enjoy the contrasting challenges of ELART and Rose Company work and intend to do lots of both in the future.

I am based in Lancaster in the north-west of England, but travel regularly for work. Recent shows (ELART and Rose Company) have been in Stratford-upon-Avon, Reading, Cambridge, London, Liverpool, Salford and Preston, as well as Lancaster.

I am always keen to hear new ideas for shows, to meet people for new collaborations or to take on directing work/commissions. Do get in touch!