Richard Cheshire


School of Digital, Technologies and Arts

fter being Curriculum Leader for Drama, Performance and Scenography and Director of Learning and Teaching at the Department of Theatre, Film and Television at Aberystwyth University, I was appointed to join the dynamic Performing Arts team here at Staffordshire University three years ago.
I balance my work at Staffordshire University with that of being a freelance theatre director.

Professional Theatre work and engagement includes:

2018/19: For Sell A Door Worldwide - currently working with the Company as Director for Aladdin at the Broadway Theatre Catford.
2017/18: For PHA directed Aladdin at the Marina Theatre Lowestoft, starring Anne Widdicombe and Mark Reid and Peter Pan at the Pomegranate Theatre, Chesterfield starring Sam Attwater and Kelli Young.
2016/17: For PHA directed and co-wrote Peter for the Pavilion Theatre Worthing, starring Richard McCourt, Amelia lily, Patrick Monahan and Lloyd Daniels and wrote and directed Beauty and the Beast at the Marina Theatre Lowestoft starring Jeremy Edwards.
2015/16: For PHA directed Snow White at the Pomegranate Theatre, Chesterfield starring Jonathan Ansell, Nicki French and Philip Green and Sleeping Beauty at the Marina Theatre Lowestoft, starring Rusty Lee, Asa Elliot and John Lyons.
2014/15: For PHA directed Cinderella at the Pomegranate Theatre, Chesterfield starring Camilla Dallerup and Asa Elliot.
2013/14: For IMAGINE THEATRE played Dame in Dick Whittington at the Victoria Theatre Halifax directed by Rob Marsden.
Richard also devises and directs and plays Dame for the famous Wardens pantomimes at the internationally acclaimed Arts Centre in Aberystwyth and regularly writes and directs the pantomimes for Reveal Theatre Company / Sunshine Productions at the Rose Theatre Rugeley.

He has also directed and played in pantomimes for Kevin Wood, including the Queen of Hearts in Puss in Boots with Melvyn Hayes and Jenny Powell (Buxton Opera House), Widow Twankey in Aladdin with Christopher Timothy and Gita Kapoor (Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne), the comedy King in Jack and the Beanstalk with Trevor Bannister (Wyvern Theatre, Swindon) and with Barry Howard, Kristen Schmitt and Lucy Benjamin (Orchard Theatre, Dartford). An award-winning documentary was made of his production of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs starring the late Ted Rodgers and Dusty Bin (Channel 4).

Richard was delighted to play one of the ugly sisters at the Royal Theatre Northampton’s centenary production of Cinderella and he returned to Northampton the following year to play the comic role of Muffin in Mother Goose. At the Royal Hippodrome Theatre in Eastbourne, Richard wrote and directed Cinderella, Puss in Boots and Sinbad the Sailor for Mark Brewer’s Tivoli Productions.

As an Associate Director at the Royal Theatre Northampton, Richard directed Congreve’s The Way of the World, John Godber’s Teechers, Langford Wilson’s Talley’s Folly and Phil Young’s Crystal Clear.

As an Associate Director of Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Richard was instrumental in establishing their renowned professional summer seasons. He directed productions including Godspell, Annie, Singing in the Rain, Oklahoma, South Pacific, Oliver, Me and My Girl, Crazy for You and The King and I. He played Max in The Sound of Music, the cowardly lion in The Wizard of Oz, Cornel Pickering in My Fair Lady and Billis in South Pacific.

He was also director of the Arts Centre’s annual School Shakespeare Project, directing in-house and touring productions of The Tempest, Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, The Merchant of Venice, Cymbeline, Pericles, Twelfth Night and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

He also directed the Arts Centre’s first Welsh tour of Tennessee William’s The Glass Menagerie, Willy Russell’s One for the Road and many community theatre productions including Amadeus, Nicholas Nickleby, Rape of the Fair Country, Another Country and She Stoops to Conquer.

Earlier in his career, he directed Charley’s Aunt at the Tivoli Theatre Eastbourne and a National Tour of Salad Days for Mark Brewer Productions. His productions of David Wood plays- The Gingerbread Man, Nutcracker Sweet, Flibberty and the Penguin and The Owl and the Pussycat were performed at the Sherman Theatre Cardiff and Barn Theatre, Aberystwyth and on the Edinburgh Fringe.

In 2000 he was invited to be an Adjunct Professor at Wesleyan College Virginia (USA) where he directed a highly successful production of Moll Flanders.

Professional memberships and activities

Member of Equity.
External Examiner for Acting and Drama at Staffordshire University 2007 -2012.
External Examiner for Acting and Performance at Bath Spa University 2013 – 2016.
External Examiner for MA in Young People’s Theatre at Bath Spa University 2017.
Currently External Examiner for the MA in Musical Theatre at Guildford School of Acting.
Consultant for M.A. in Theatre Practice by Negotiated Learning at Staffordshire University 2014.

Academic qualifications

P.G.C.E (with Distinction) University of Wales.
B.A. (Hons) Drama and Religious Studies, University of Wales, Aberystwyth.
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.


Theory and Practice of Acting and Directing.
Pantomime and Popular Theatre.
Performing Shakespeare and Restoration Drama.
Musical Theatre.

Research interests

He is currently co-leading (with Rob Marsden) on developing an International Conference on exploring contemporary manifestations of pantomime. This will be delivered at Staffordshire University during Easter 2020.

Enterprise and commercial interests

Richard is currently co-leading with Robert Marsden on creating a joint M.A. in acting and directing between Staffordshire University and Escuela Superior de Arte Dramatico de Murcia.
In 2016 he was awarded a HEIF grant to explore creating links for the University with learning theatres within the Staffordshire area.

In 2013 he won a grant from the European Social Fund for Aberystwyth University to deliver work-based learning courses in professional mentoring for theatre arts and creative company development.
He has lead many He has led many short courses in the performing arts for the Drama Association of Wales at Swansea and Aberystwyth Universities.


Level 4: Movers and Shakers; The Actor as Collaborator.
Level 5: Theatre Practice: Play Production; Explorations in Rehearsal; Heightened Text.
Level 6: Creative Company; Musical Theatre; Staging the Classics.
Level 7: MA Theatre Practice by Negotiated Learning.

Top 250 Young University

Times Higher Education Young University Rankings 2020

Top 15 for Teaching Quality

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021

Top 15 for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021

Midlands University of the Year

Midlands Business Awards 2020