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Paul Taylor-Mills appointed artistic director of The Other Palace

Taylor-Mills is back at The Other Palace

Paul Taylor-Mills
(© Mark Senior)

Exclusive: WhatsOnStage sat down with Paul Taylor-Mills to discuss his fresh appointment as artistic director of The Other Palace, which was bought by Bill Kenwright last week.

Formerly artistic director at the venue when it was owned by Really Useful Group, Taylor-Mills now makes his return to the space, while also acting as artistic director of the Turbine Theatre.

He told us in an interview: "It was fair to say that I'd put my time in The Other Palace in a box and tied a lovely bow around it – but the parameters are different now, the vision is different and it feels right."

"I wouldn't have been able to open the Turbine without my time at The Other Palace, but at the same time I wouldn't have been able to return to The Other Palace without building everything that I am at the Turbine. I'm not a spiritual person but I do believe that you get back what you put out into the world."

Taylor-Mills spoke on his relationship with Kenwright: "Bill Kenwright has been like a guardian angel to me. As I've grown in this industry one of the qualities I've always looked for is loyalty. Because there are always good days and hard days – everyone can deal with the good days, but it's dealing with the tricky times that makes up 75 per cent of the job. Having someone who can make you feel like you can take on the world and trusts your vision, giving you the wings to do your job."

Taylor-Mills has spearheaded the UK production of Heathers the Musical, which returns later this month. He speaks to its success: "Heathers is the show that just gets more and more exciting – it keeps growing. One of the reasons we're bringing it back is because the 2021 West End run outperformed the 2018 West End run. Some of the tour nights were even outperforming the West End. Having an auditorium full of 75 per cent young people is so rare: it's such an honour to be a part of it."

What to expect from programming at The Other Palace? "I need to find the shows that start regionally, or are in Off-West End venues and need a leg up, that can sit neatly in a venue like The Other Palace.

"But it's also a venue that has to be run commercially – it isn't a charity – so it's balancing the commercial and creative needs of a central London space. What I'm learning as artistic director of the Turbine is that the work should suit the space it's in – some shows going forward will suit the rustic environment of the Turbine, while others may fit well in the gloss and sheen of The Other Palace."

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