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Talk #80


Quarantine was founded in 1998 by directors Richard Gregory and Renny O’Shea, who still lead the company today, and designer Simon Banham. Quarantine is an award-winning ensemble of artists and producers making cross-disciplinary work that explores what it means to live right now. They are rooted in Manchester but create and tour projects around the world that are both intimate and immediate in their relationships with people and global in their reference and scope. Quarantine has an international reputation for intellectually rigorous, socially progressive and formally inventive art that questions who gets seen, whose stories are told and who stands in for whom – questions about representation lie at the heart of their work.

Richard Gregory is a founder and co-Artistic Director of Quarantine. He has developed a distinctive practice around a creative response to everyday life and the commonplace. Recently he has directed dance piece Wallflower; the quartet of works Summer. Autumn. Winter. Spring.; and What Is the City but the People?, the opening event of Manchester International Festival (2017) which won Manchester Culture Awards Event of the Year. He is currently making 12 Last Songs, an epic durational piece about labour – the work that we do, which will premiere at Transform festival at Leeds Playhouse this October.

Sarah Hunter is an artist and producer, who is part of Quarantine’s ensemble. Since graduating from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in 2010, Sarah has developed a practice that explores the relationship between theatre (in the broadest sense of the word) and everyday lived experience. For Quarantine, Sarah directed Winter. (2017), a film made in collaboration with a person who knows they are dying, for Noorderzon Performing Arts Festival; in 2019, she edited a book on ‘staging life and death’ in collaboration with Quarantine Co-Artistic Director Renny O’Shea (published by Manchester University Press); and in 2021 she made The people of an audio walk along an ordinary high street, in Longsight, Manchester with artist Kate Daley. Sarah is currently working on 12 Last Songs as Collaborating Artist/Assistant Director.