Richard Twyman
Richard Twyman
© Adam Bennett

English Touring Theatre have announced Richard Twyman's first season as the company's artistic director.

In February, ETT will join forces with theatre company Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory for the first time as they tour Twyman's production of Othello. The cast includes Abraham Popoola as Othello, Mark Lockyer as Iago, Norah Lopez Holden as Desdemona and Katy Stephens as Emilia. The production will run at the Tobacco Factory, Bristol from 21 February before touring to Exeter Northcott Theatre and Wilton's Music Hall, London.

Sam Holcroft's comedy Rules for Living will tour England in the autumn. The play, about a dysfunctional family Christmas, opened at the National Theatre in 2015. It will run at Royal & Derngate, Northampton from 12 September before touring (details to be announced). Simon Godwin directs.

Conor McPherson's The Weir will tour for the first time this autumn. The play, which sees five people sat in a pub trading stories, opened at the Royal Court in 1997. To celebrate its 20th year, ETT and Mercury Theatre Colchester will tour the production, opening in Colchester on 14 September, going on to Harrogate, Cheltenham, Doncaster, Barnstaple, Exeter, Oldham, Warwick, Poole and Huddersfield.

Twyman took on the role in June 2016, taking over from Rachel Tackley who has gone on to join Chichester Festival Theatre as executive director.

On the season announcement, Twyman said: "In this time of complex and extraordinary change in the country, ETT's role as a national touring company has never felt more important.

"This season sees us tour to 21 theatres throughout England, bringing audiences together to explore the conventions and fears that shape our national identity and govern our experience of contemporary life."