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Director Vicky Featherstone in rehearsals for The Ritual Slaughter Of Gorge Mastromas (photo: Manuel Harlan)
Director Vicky Featherstone in rehearsals for The Ritual Slaughter Of Gorge Mastromas (Photo: Manuel Harlan)

Vicky Featherstone heads up The Stage 100 list 2018

By Robin Johnson, Published January 4, 2018

Royal Court Artistic Director Vicky Featherstone has shot to the top of The Stage 100 list in 2018, the newspaper’s annual guide to the most influential figures working in the theatre and performing arts industry.

Featherstone’s placing comes in recognition of her venue’s proactive response to allegations of sexual harassment in the industry, as well as her programming of a year of strong artistic successes at the Sloane Square venue, including Jez Butterworth’s huge hit The Ferryman, now playing in the West End.

Featherstone moves up from 39th to 1st place in 2017, in doing so becoming the third woman to top the list as a solo entry. Of the announcement, Featherstone said: ‘‘It is a total shock and honour to be recognised by The Stage for our work around No Grey Area, especially amongst this list of theatre heroines and heroes.”

Other high risers in this year’s list include James Graham, the playwright behind hits This House, Ink, Labour Of Love and Quiz, who moves up 66 places to 10th, along with new entries Lin-Manuel Miranda (9), the creator of smash-hit musical Hamilton; director Ivo van Hove (19); incoming Young Vic Artistic Director Kwame Kwei-Armah (20); and multi Olivier Award-winner Imelda Staunton (26).

Elsewhere, impresarios Cameron Mackintosh (in his 50th year as a theatre producer) and Nicholas Allott, whose numerous 2017 successes included the launch of the Marble Arch Theatre with Five Guys Named Moe and the UK premiere of Hamilton, placed at Number 2. The prolific producers Sonia Friedman, who worked on the West End transfer of The Ferryman, placed at Number 3.

Society of London Theatre President and West End producer Kenny Wax, whose credits include The Play That Goes Wrong and Mischief Movie Night, placed at 41. UK Theatre president and Chief Executive of Birmingham Hippodrome, Fiona Allan, placed at position number 40.

Julian Bird, Chief Executive of the Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre, and Cassie Chadderton (Head of UK Theatre & Membership Development), placed at position number 45 on the list.

Top 20 (last year’s positions in brackets):

  1. Vicky Featherstone (39)
  2. Cameron Mackintosh and Nicholas Allott (3)
  3. Sonia Friedman (1)
  4. Andrew Lloyd Webber (2)
  5. Rufus Norris and Lisa Burger (5)
  6. Nica Burns and Max Weitzenhoffer (6)
  7. Nick Starr and Nicholas Hytner (59)
  8. Michael Harrison (21)
  9. Lin-Manuel Miranda (new entry)
  10. James Graham (76)
  11. Rupert Goold (25)
  12. David Lan and Lucy Woollatt (8)
  13. Nick Thomas (26)
  14. Martin Green (new entry)
  15. Sarah Frankcom (31)
  16. Mark Cornell, Adam Kenwright, Michael Lynas (4)
  17. Gregory Doran, Catherine Mallyon, Erica Whyman (7)
  18. Gemma Bodinetz and Deborah Aydon (35)
  19. Ivo van Hove (new entry)
  20. Kwame Kwei-Armah (new entry)