Jessica Lazar is a freelance director represented by Jessica Stewart at Independent Talent, and part of award-winning theatre company Atticist (which she co-founded in 2016). She works on new writing, revivals, and adaptations, and was an EVOLVE Artist in Residence at Oxford Playhouse in 2019/20. Since March 2021 Jessica has been a beneficiary of Mercury Creatives, a professional development programme for the cultural sector. As part of her engagement on this programme, Jessica is currently undergoing 24 hours of mentoring support, alongside attending a series of business development, showcasing and networking events with fellow Mercury Creative beneficiaries. The Mercury Creatives programme is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and is being delivered by the Mercury Theatre, Colchester.
Jessica's productions have won the Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award 2016, the inaugural 2018 SIT-Up Award (for ‘social impact theatre’), and been nominated for ten 2018-19 Off West End Awards including Best Director, Best Ensemble, and Best Production, as well as the 2017 Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award.
Recent theatre credits include Rafaella Marcus's Sap (Vaults 2020 / further details TBA), Lisa D'Amour's Anna Bella Eema (Arcola 2019), Sam Potter’s Unicorn and Iman Qureshi’s this is a love story (North Wall Arts Centre 2019), David Greig’s Outlying Islands (King’s Head Theatre 2019), Christina Murdock’s Dangerous Giant Animals (Edinburgh Fringe / United Solo Fest New York / Park Theatre 2018), Steven Berkoff’s East (King’s Head Theatre, 2018), and Katherine Rundell’s Life According to Saki (Edinburgh Fringe 2016 / Fourth Street Theatre New York 2017). Details of these productions and further credits are available here.
‘Combining first-rate puppetry, masked theatre, and slick ensemble choreography, Jessica Lazar’s eclectic direction is alive with energy.’
The Telegraph, Tristram Fane Saunders: Life According to Saki, 2016
‘Berkoff’s play remains a remarkable work…Jessica Lazar’s inventive production is no less remarkable. Her five-strong cast wriggle and writhe, spit and snarl their way across the intimate, sparse space like grotesque marionettes, all to a cheery Cockney piano accompaniment.’
The Stage, Fergus Morgan: East, 2018
‘Jessica Lazar’s production brings real inventiveness to something that might be overly static...The spoken simply melts into song, a woman turns into a wolf, a child is made out of mud, the real and the fantastical sit side by side in a weirdly enticing slice of Southern Gothic.’
Stagedoor, Lyn Gardner: Anna Bella Eema, 2019
‘I was impressed by Jessica Lazar’s production and the discipline of its performers.’
The Guardian, Michael Billington: Anna Bella Eema, 2019
‘The continued imagination of theatre makers has been one of the few inspiring things to come out of this thoroughly uninspiring year...[Katherine] Parkinson is a terrific guide...deftly woven together by director Jessica Lazar’.
The Stage, Fergus Morgan: The You Play Vol 1: small acts, 2020
‘Teenage romance, queer desire, spiritual conflict and the crucifixion might seem like impossibly large themes to squeeze into 30 minutes but Margaret Perry's fine, tender A PASSION PLAY pulls it off spectacularly.’
The Stage, Ka Bradley: A Passion Play, 2020
Andrew Laithwaite and Will Stanford in The Caucasian Chalk Circle
(Photo: Jacob Sacks Jones)