In the beginning, Nabil and Richard worked from home, running occasional one-off performances at events across the country. The first production was Sideshow, which Nabil performed and directed.
In 1981, the first United Nations Year of Disabled People, Graeae went international, visiting Greece, the home of the myth from which it derived its name.
Since those early days, the company has grown and adapted to the changing attitudes of society, and the passions of the disabled community. Under the Artistic Direction of Nabil Shaban, the company performed many shows and became established as a registered charity. Then, in 1994, Ewan Marshall became Artistic Director. Shows such as Ubu and Flesh Fly cemented the company’s reputation as a force that could last.
Since 1998, Jenny Sealey has been Artistic Director and has overseen successes such as peeling, Diary of an Action Man and Blasted. In 1999, Missing Piece was launched, an intensive and accredited training course for disabled actors, and the success of this has fed into our current training courses Scene Change and Into the Scene.
Graeae now tours nationally (and sometimes internationally) up to three times a year with imaginative and exciting productions of both classic and newly-commissioned theatre.
Graeae’s aim is to redress the exclusion of people with physical and sensory impairments from performance and to create genuinely pioneering theatre in both its aesthetic and content.