Chester Myatery Plays Title
Chester Myatery Plays Story
Chester Myatery Plays Details
Chester Myatery Plays Book
Chester Myatery Plays Title
Chester Myatery Plays Story
Chester Myatery Plays Details
Chester Myatery Plays Book

The Chester Mystery Plays are a historic theatrical event presented under professional direction by the people of Chester. Their performance, once every five years, has become a rare and much anticipated highlight of the British arts calendar, attracting people from all over the world. The production is one of the largest community events in the UK featuring hundreds of enthusiasts of all ages among the cast, crew and the support teams working in administration, marketing and front of house.

Stacks Image 80089

20% Earlybird discounts available for a limited period!

Curtain up in...

2023 performance dates

28 June to 15 July

20% Earlybird discounts available for a limited period!

Curtain up in...

2023 performance dates

28 June to 15 July

Stacks Image 80685
Stacks Image 80183

Meet the Professional Team

Click pics to see biographies

Stacks Image 80483
Stacks Image 80476
Stacks Image 80469
Stacks Image 80462
Stacks Image 80455

John Young - Director

John trained on the National Theatre Directors Course and is a former Resident Assistant Director at The Finborough Theatre. Prior to this he completed the Emerging Trainee Director Scheme at Theatr Clwyd. John is the Associate Artistic Director of Yet Another Carnival a Resident Company at Storyhouse. John has recently been appointed as the Artistic Director for the 2023 cycle of The Chester Mystery Plays.

Direction includes: Romeo and Juliet and The Merry Wives of Windsor (Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre), The Funny Thing About Depression (South Douglas Old Friends Association), The Drag Nativity and A Drag Christmas Carol (United Services), When the Light Goes Out (Tatton Park), Vincent River (Hope Mill Theatre), For the Fallen (Ballakermeen Studio), To Dream Again (Polka Theatre and Theatr Clwyd), A Brief History of Holding Hands (Vault Festival), Scattered (Theatr Clwyd, West Yorkshire Playhouse and National Tour), We Know Where You Live (Finborough Theatre), A Place in the Woods (Tristan Bates), The Watchers (Southwark Playhouse), What the Walls Saw, The Thing Is and The Joy Show (Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre Young Company), and Soft Beats the Heart (Theatre503).

Film Includes: Transfiguration: I Fall and We Rise (Fallen Angels) and Christmas Street (Theatre in the Quarter).
Matt Baker - Composer and Musical Director
Matt has composed for many theatre productions around the UK, including several cycles the Chester Mystery Plays, and Chester City Passion. He is artistic director for Theatre in the Quarter which has created exciting projects with people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds, taking place in a range of settings, from palaces to railway stations, regional theatres to village halls. He is musical director for the women’s choir A Handbag of Harmonies, Chester’s LGBT choir Proud Marys and is director of music at the University of Chester.

Matt’s work as musical director with young people takes him to all corners of the world including Australia, India, Malaysia and Germany. During the pandemic, his work with the International Schools Theatre Association has involved creating film and music with students from all across the globe. Matt and his neighbours created a lockdown ‘musical’ called We’ll Meet Again which was viewed over 400,000 times and was featured on television both nationally and across the world in May 2020. Matt is also widely sought to bring people from all backgrounds together in singing, whether it is hundreds of children in a park, or thousands of bank workers in a stadium.

For his commitment to the arts in Cheshire over the years, Matt has received an honorary Master of Music Degree from the University of Chester, and an honorary Master of the University degree from Open University. He also received the Outstanding Achievement award from the Cheshire Community and Voluntary Arts. Matt was proud to be included in The Queen’s Birthday Honours list in 2021, receiving a British Empire Medal for his services to music and communities in Chester and beyond.
Jess Curtis - Designer
Jess trained at Motley.

Recent work includes VINCENT RIVER (The Bridge Theatre, Brussels); POSTCARD FROM MOROCCO (Dutch National Opera Academy); JEKYLL AND HYDE (Derby); BRIEF ENCOUNTER (Stephen Joseph Theatre); GENESIS INC. (Hampstead Theatre); LOSING VENICE (The Orange Tree Theatre); UNCLE VANYA (The Almeida); VILLETTE, DANGEROUS CORNER (West Yorkshire Playhouse); POD, PROVOK’D devised at Guildhall School); KISS ME QUICKSTEP, HAUNTING JULIA, LOVE LETTERS (The Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch); ONE FOR THE ROAD, GLASS CAGE, FOLLIES (Royal and Derngate, Northampton); THE HOLY ROSENBERGS (National Theatre); HOTEL CERISE (Theatre Royal, Stratford East); ANOTHER DOOR CLOSED (Theatre Royal Bath); ENDGAME (Liverpool Everyman); DANGEROUS CORNER (West Yorkshire Playhouse and West End); FRANKENSTEIN (Frantic Assembly, Northampton); BURIAL AT THEBES (Nottingham Playhouse/Barbican/US Tour) and RHAPSODY, FANTASY (Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House).

She has also designed the Grosvenor Park Open Air Season 2013- 2016/2021, the opening season at Storyhouse, Chester and bar interiors for Underbelly at the South Bank, Hyde Park and Leicester Square.

She is part of the Society of British Theatre’s Sustainability working group.
Emma Briggs - Movement Director
Emma trained at Ballet Rambert and London Contemporary Dance School in London and after deciding to make teaching her career, successfully graduated from the three year teacher training course at the Royal Academy of Dancing. Upon graduating, Emma was awarded the RAD Licentiate Diploma Certificate and received the award for ‘Outstanding Choreographer’. Emma began her vocational teaching at the RAD headquarters in Battersea, setting up an outreach programme in contemporary dance as well as various other teaching jobs around London and the UK. She choreographed for Vidal Sassoon hair shows and other dance colleges. Emma then worked for English National Ballet in the costume department before she accepted a post as Ballet/Contemporary teacher at ‘Centro de Danza’ school in Valencia, Spain. While in Valencia, she was senior teacher and exam coach within the ballet school and ballet mistress and resident choreographer for the professional touring company.

Emma has 30 years’ experience as a contemporary teacher and choreographer that has taken her all over the world. She was appointed classical/contemporary teacher for Vocational Colleges in the North West, The Hammond School, KSDance, Northern Ballet School, Centrepointe, and for the British Ballet Organisation Associates in Manchester. Emma has been part of the faculty at the International Cecchetti Competition in Manchester teaching contemporary dance to the finalists and summer school students. Choreographer for finalist in the BBC Young Dancer of the Year. She has previously collaborated with Soundscape Orchestra and professional dancers at venues throughout the North West and was appointed contemporary choreographer for a professional company BalletNorthWest.

Emma is thrilled to be working as the Movement Director for the Chester Mystery Plays 2023 alongside Director John Young, a fantastic artistic team and a fabulous cast.
Aaron J Dootson - Lighting Designer
Training: Wimbledon College of Art (Lighting Design and Practice, Distinction, 2009).

Credits include: Pigs Might Fly (Theatre Peckham/UK You); A Kiss for Cinderella & Ragtime (MCT at Alleyns - NYMT); Hair (Bridewell Theatre); Fame (Alexandra Theatre); Spring Awakening (The Hammond); Grease (The Hammond); Zog & The Flying Doctors (UK Tour 2022); Henrietta & Billy The Kid (MCT at Alleyns - NYMT); Pippin (Charing Cross Theatre); Forever Plaid (Upstairs at the Gatehouse); Fame, Jekyll & Hyde (The Hammond); Parade, Legend Trippers & Anything Goes (Other Palace - NYMT); Jerry Springer The Opera (Hope Mill Theatre); Legally Blonde (The Hammond); The Exonerated (Hope Mill Theatre); Cabaret (The Hammond); Aspects of Love (Southwark Playhouse); Rise & Fall (Page One Theatre); Betty Blue Eyes (GSA); Illusion (HOME); Wind In The Willows (Polka Theatre); The Return Of The Soldier (Hope Mill Theatre); Feed (Pleasance Dome); Aspects Of Love (Hope Mill Theatre); Notre Dame (Alexandra Theatre); Double Act (Polka Theatre); For The Fallen (Ballakermeen Theatre); Happy Warriors (Upstairs at the Gatehouse); Night at the Oscars (Upstairs at the Gatehouse); Illuminate (Manchester Central Library); Snow Queen (Polka Theatre); Hamlet (Wyllyotts Theatre); My Brother, My Sister & Me (Polka Theatre); Decade (Assembly Theatre); Pippin (Southwark Playhouse/Hope Mill Theatre); Hatch (Polka Theatre); YANK!! (Charing Cross Theatre and Hope Mill Theatre); Sarah & Duck (Polka Theatre and UK Tour).

www.aaronjdootson.co.uk

Meet the Professional Team

Click pic to open/close biography

Stacks Image 80249

John Young - Director

John trained on the National Theatre Directors Course and is a former Resident Assistant Director at The Finborough Theatre. Prior to this he completed the Emerging Trainee Director Scheme at Theatr Clwyd. John is the Associate Artistic Director of Yet Another Carnival a Resident Company at Storyhouse. John has recently been appointed as the Artistic Director for the 2023 cycle of The Chester Mystery Plays.

Direction includes: Romeo and Juliet and The Merry Wives of Windsor (Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre), The Funny Thing About Depression (South Douglas Old Friends Association), The Drag Nativity and A Drag Christmas Carol (United Services), When the Light Goes Out (Tatton Park), Vincent River (Hope Mill Theatre), For the Fallen (Ballakermeen Studio), To Dream Again (Polka Theatre and Theatr Clwyd), A Brief History of Holding Hands (Vault Festival), Scattered (Theatr Clwyd, West Yorkshire Playhouse and National Tour), We Know Where You Live (Finborough Theatre), A Place in the Woods (Tristan Bates), The Watchers (Southwark Playhouse), What the Walls Saw, The Thing Is and The Joy Show (Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre Young Company), and Soft Beats the Heart (Theatre503).

Film Includes: Transfiguration: I Fall and We Rise (Fallen Angels) and Christmas Street (Theatre in the Quarter).
Stacks Image 80227
Matt Baker - Composer and Musical Director
Matt has composed for many theatre productions around the UK, including several cycles the Chester Mystery Plays, and Chester City Passion. He is artistic director for Theatre in the Quarter which has created exciting projects with people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds, taking place in a range of settings, from palaces to railway stations, regional theatres to village halls. He is musical director for the women’s choir A Handbag of Harmonies, Chester’s LGBT choir Proud Marys and is director of music at the University of Chester.

Matt’s work as musical director with young people takes him to all corners of the world including Australia, India, Malaysia and Germany. During the pandemic, his work with the International Schools Theatre Association has involved creating film and music with students from all across the globe. Matt and his neighbours created a lockdown ‘musical’ called We’ll Meet Again which was viewed over 400,000 times and was featured on television both nationally and across the world in May 2020. Matt is also widely sought to bring people from all backgrounds together in singing, whether it is hundreds of children in a park, or thousands of bank workers in a stadium.

For his commitment to the arts in Cheshire over the years, Matt has received an honorary Master of Music Degree from the University of Chester, and an honorary Master of the University degree from Open University. He also received the Outstanding Achievement award from the Cheshire Community and Voluntary Arts. Matt was proud to be included in The Queen’s Birthday Honours list in 2021, receiving a British Empire Medal for his services to music and communities in Chester and beyond.
Stacks Image 80238
Jess Curtis - Designer
Jess trained at Motley.

Recent work includes VINCENT RIVER (The Bridge Theatre, Brussels); POSTCARD FROM MOROCCO (Dutch National Opera Academy); JEKYLL AND HYDE (Derby); BRIEF ENCOUNTER (Stephen Joseph Theatre); GENESIS INC. (Hampstead Theatre); LOSING VENICE (The Orange Tree Theatre); UNCLE VANYA (The Almeida); VILLETTE, DANGEROUS CORNER (West Yorkshire Playhouse); POD, PROVOK’D devised at Guildhall School); KISS ME QUICKSTEP, HAUNTING JULIA, LOVE LETTERS (The Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch); ONE FOR THE ROAD, GLASS CAGE, FOLLIES (Royal and Derngate, Northampton); THE HOLY ROSENBERGS (National Theatre); HOTEL CERISE (Theatre Royal, Stratford East); ANOTHER DOOR CLOSED (Theatre Royal Bath); ENDGAME (Liverpool Everyman); DANGEROUS CORNER (West Yorkshire Playhouse and West End); FRANKENSTEIN (Frantic Assembly, Northampton); BURIAL AT THEBES (Nottingham Playhouse/Barbican/US Tour) and RHAPSODY, FANTASY (Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House).

She has also designed the Grosvenor Park Open Air Season 2013- 2016/2021, the opening season at Storyhouse, Chester and bar interiors for Underbelly at the South Bank, Hyde Park and Leicester Square.

She is part of the Society of British Theatre’s Sustainability working group.
Stacks Image 80216
Emma Briggs - Movement Director
Emma trained at Ballet Rambert and London Contemporary Dance School in London and after deciding to make teaching her career, successfully graduated from the three year teacher training course at the Royal Academy of Dancing. Upon graduating, Emma was awarded the RAD Licentiate Diploma Certificate and received the award for ‘Outstanding Choreographer’. Emma began her vocational teaching at the RAD headquarters in Battersea, setting up an outreach programme in contemporary dance as well as various other teaching jobs around London and the UK. She choreographed for Vidal Sassoon hair shows and other dance colleges. Emma then worked for English National Ballet in the costume department before she accepted a post as Ballet/Contemporary teacher at ‘Centro de Danza’ school in Valencia, Spain. While in Valencia, she was senior teacher and exam coach within the ballet school and ballet mistress and resident choreographer for the professional touring company.

Emma has 30 years’ experience as a contemporary teacher and choreographer that has taken her all over the world. She was appointed classical/contemporary teacher for Vocational Colleges in the North West, The Hammond School, KSDance, Northern Ballet School, Centrepointe, and for the British Ballet Organisation Associates in Manchester. Emma has been part of the faculty at the International Cecchetti Competition in Manchester teaching contemporary dance to the finalists and summer school students. Choreographer for finalist in the BBC Young Dancer of the Year. She has previously collaborated with Soundscape Orchestra and professional dancers at venues throughout the North West and was appointed contemporary choreographer for a professional company BalletNorthWest.

Emma is thrilled to be working as the Movement Director for the Chester Mystery Plays 2023 alongside Director John Young, a fantastic artistic team and a fabulous cast.
Stacks Image 80409
Aaron J Dootson - Lighting Designer
Training: Wimbledon College of Art (Lighting Design and Practice, Distinction, 2009).

Credits include: Pigs Might Fly (Theatre Peckham/UK You); A Kiss for Cinderella & Ragtime (MCT at Alleyns - NYMT); Hair (Bridewell Theatre); Fame (Alexandra Theatre); Spring Awakening (The Hammond); Grease (The Hammond); Zog & The Flying Doctors (UK Tour 2022); Henrietta & Billy The Kid (MCT at Alleyns - NYMT); Pippin (Charing Cross Theatre); Forever Plaid (Upstairs at the Gatehouse); Fame, Jekyll & Hyde (The Hammond); Parade, Legend Trippers & Anything Goes (Other Palace - NYMT); Jerry Springer The Opera (Hope Mill Theatre); Legally Blonde (The Hammond); The Exonerated (Hope Mill Theatre); Cabaret (The Hammond); Aspects of Love (Southwark Playhouse); Rise & Fall (Page One Theatre); Betty Blue Eyes (GSA); Illusion (HOME); Wind In The Willows (Polka Theatre); The Return Of The Soldier (Hope Mill Theatre); Feed (Pleasance Dome); Aspects Of Love (Hope Mill Theatre); Notre Dame (Alexandra Theatre); Double Act (Polka Theatre); For The Fallen (Ballakermeen Theatre); Happy Warriors (Upstairs at the Gatehouse); Night at the Oscars (Upstairs at the Gatehouse); Illuminate (Manchester Central Library); Snow Queen (Polka Theatre); Hamlet (Wyllyotts Theatre); My Brother, My Sister & Me (Polka Theatre); Decade (Assembly Theatre); Pippin (Southwark Playhouse/Hope Mill Theatre); Hatch (Polka Theatre); YANK!! (Charing Cross Theatre and Hope Mill Theatre); Sarah & Duck (Polka Theatre and UK Tour).

www.aaronjdootson.co.uk

Call for Volunteers!

CMP Volunteers

Women, men, boys, girls, school or theatre groups - whether on stage or as part of our amazing backstage crew, if you fancy getting involved with next year’s production…

We need YOU to help keep the Plays alive

This incredible community effort has proved to be an amazing experience for so many people, for so many generations. Front of house, behind the scenes, or somewhere in between, if you fancy offering your skills, talents and abilities to the Chester Mystery Plays you will also need commitment and dedication - but the rewards make it all worthwhile.

Stacks Image 79887

2023 News

  • Matt Baker in full flow
  • Around 250 people attended the launch event
  • Chairman Ian Sanderson

Auditions announced at 2023 launch event

Actors, musicians, dancers and singers of all ages are invited to audition for the 2023 cycle  of the Chester Mystery Plays this month...

Read More

Director seeks cast for world-renowned theatre project

The director of the UK’s largest regularly produced community theatre project is looking for hundreds of players, makers and stitchers to tell the greatest story ever told...

Read More

Artistic Director introduced at Garden Party

After a Covid break the Friends of Chester Mystery Plays were pleased to be able to meet once again...

Read More

Director announced for 2023 cycle

The board of the Chester Mystery Plays has announced the director of the 2023 cycle of the world-famous Chester Mystery Plays...

Read More

Donate!