Latest News Headlines

ABTT Stephen Joseph Award

ABTT Stephen Joseph Award

UK - To mark the centenary of Stephen Joseph’s birth and the 60th anniversary of the founding of ABTT, the ABTT Stephen Joseph Committee has announced an Award to commemorate the life and work of this maverick theatrical genius.

Stephen Joseph was one of the most influential theatre practitioners of the last century. He was one of the founders of the ABTT and also the Society of Theatre Consultants now the Institute of Theatre Consultants. He promoted new writing, architectural standards and technical excellence, and was an inspiring university teacher. His pioneering work has given rise to the use of myriad forms of theatre and open staging in current practice. At the heart of his philosophy was the close and fundamental relationship between performer and audience. Above all, he established theatre-in-the-round as a legitimate theatrical form in the UK.

This award honours Stephen’s wide-ranging legacy which continues to influence many aspects of theatre practice. The first ABTT Stephen Joseph Award will be presented in June 2021.

There are three categories from which one recipient of the Award will be chosen. For the sake of clarity, there will be just one award in 2021 presented to the most deserving nomination drawn from any one of the categories.

These categories are:

  1. A living individual whose work or body of work has created an exemplary and adventurous relationship between performance and audience.

  2. A twenty-first century company that is widely acknowledged for its skills and innovation in creating live theatrical experiences in unconventional spaces.

  3. A venue which excels, either by configuring an empty or found space or by having recently developed a theatre building, in providing an imaginative range of adaptable staging, including in-the-round or a purpose-designed theatre-in-the-round.

Nominations across these three categories might include, as examples: a theatre-in-the-round still in operation as a part of Stephen’s continued legacy, or a company or an individual whose new work reflects the essence of Stephen’s practice creating live theatrical events in shared performance spaces in which traditional barriers between actor and audience are removed or challenged.

For the first ABTT Stephen Joseph Award nominations will be accepted for work produced or environments created in the United Kingdom.

How to Nominate:

Please send your nominations to the ABTT office at

Please include:

  1. Your contact details,

  2. Details of the nominee and a short statement of no more than 250 words clearly explaining why the individual, company or performance environment is being put forward for the award,

  3. A short statement of no more than 250 words from a seconder: someone with personal knowledge or experience of the venue, the work or the practice of the person being nominated.

  4. Supporting evidence such as photos, video clips, designs, reviews, and testimonials.

Nominations must be received no later than 30th April 2021. For more information about this award or to put forward your nomination please contact:

15th February 2021

© 1999 - 2024 ET Press Ltd News Stories