David Byrne



David is the new Artistic Director of the Royal Court, appointed as Vicky Featherstone’s successor in July 2023; he will take up the post at the start of 2024.

David was the founding Artistic and Executive Director of one of London’s most vibrant new writing theatres, the New Diorama Theatre (NDT) which won The Stage Award for Fringe Theatre of the Year, 2022. NDT’s sell-out hit co-production with Nouveau Riche, FOR BLACK BOYS WHO HAVE CONSIDERED SUICIDE WHEN THE HUE GETS TOO HEAVY, transferred to the Royal Court, in April 2022 and to the Apollo Theatre, West End, in May 2023.  David commissioned and produced SpitLip’s hit show OPERATION MINCEMEAT which transferred to the West End in May 2023.

David is also a playwright and theatre director, whose first play won the Writers’ Guild and List Magazine Awards for Drama in 2014.  Plays include: THE INCIDENT ROOM, about the Yorkshire Ripper case, which was co-written with Olivia Hirst and first performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2019, transferring to the New Diorama in February 2020, ahead of an Off-Broadway run.  Screen rights were picked up by Babycow Productions. Also, SECRET LIFE OF HUMANS and a new, radical adaptation of George Orwell’s DOWN AND OUT IN PARIS AND LONDON both played to sold out audiences at the Edinburgh Festival and in London, receiving four and five star reviews in the national press, with both transferring Off-Broadway. SECRET LIFE OF HUMANS has been published by Nick Hern Books.

David is also a comedy writer, THE PARTY was optioned by BBC comedy, after winning their nationwide Laughing Stock contest and David has had several original projects commissioned including RUTHLESS, a comedy set in the Royal Opera House and STITCHES, a series set on Saville Row.  BEING JULIAN, about Wiki-Leaks founder Julian Assange living in the Ecuadorian Embassy was performed at the Arcola Theatre and later optioned for television by Objective Productions, with Channel 4.

David is the recipient of several Peter Brook Awards, the Off-West End Award for Best Artistic Director, the Enfant Terribles Prize, and is one of The Stage’s 100 most influential people working in theatre.