York Mystery Plays: an opportunity for aspiring directors

Would you like the opportunity to adapt and direct a short play in a supportive environment? Are you interested in being part of York’s theatrical heritage?

The York Mystery Play Supporters Trust are looking for three York-based directors, each of whom will adapt and direct one of the York Mystery Plays. No directing experience is needed: this would suit someone with an interest in the mystery cycle itself, in historical theatre, York’s local history, site-specific theatre, or who would simply like to gain some experience directing a play. This is an unpaid opportunity, but you will be fully supported throughout the process, mentored by an experienced director, Tom Straszewski, and assisted by YMPST. You will also be given a small budget for props, costumes, etc.

Interviews for short-listed applicants will take place in February, and the successful directors will start auditions and rehearsals in mid to late March**. The performances of these ‘mini-mysteries’ will take place on 1 June, each in a different venue along Micklegate, where the original York Mystery Plays would begin their performance cycle.

We are looking for adaptations of the following plays (or combinations of plays) from the Mystery cycle:

  • Creation (Plays 1, 2, and 3 combined)
  • The Fall of Adam and Eve and the Explusion from the Garden (Plays 5 and 6 combined)
  • Cain and Abel (Play 7)

The texts for all of these plays can be found here: Discover the Mysteries (yorkmysteriesathome.co.uk)

The approximate run time of each of the three performances would be 15-20 minutes, and we are open to a variety of interpretations of these play texts, from medieval to modern.

To apply, please send a short paragraph or two outlining why you would be interested in directing a mystery play to membership@ympst.co.uk by Friday 23 February 2024. This can be something in writing, or a short recording (approx. one minute) if you would prefer.

**We will also be advertising for actors, as well as people to help with costumes and props, in early March.

Media contact: Linda Terry YMPST
e: linda.terry@ympst.co.uk
m: 07810627889