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Sir Nicholas Hytner
Born Nicholas Robert Hytner
7 May 1956 (1956-05-07) (age 53)
Manchester, England
Occupation Theatre director and producer

Sir Nicholas Robert Hytner (born 7 May 1956) is an English film and theatre producer and director. He has been the artistic director of London's National Theatre since 2003.



Hytner was born in Manchester to a Jewish family, the son of barrister, Benet, QC, and Joyce Hytner.[1] He attended Manchester Grammar School and read English at Trinity Hall, Cambridge. In the early 1980s he worked at Exeter University's Northcotte Theatre, and in the theatre department. He later became an Associate Director at Manchester's Royal Exchange Theatre, where he worked between 1985 and 1989. Hytner first found himself working regularly at the National Theatre in London between 1989 and 1997.

Hytner's directorial work for theatre includes The Country Wife, Edward II, Don Carlos, Ghetto, Miss Saigon, Orpheus Descending, a 2-part adaptation of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy, Alan Bennett's The History Boys, Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel (1992), Southwark Fair and The Alchemist, Measure for Measure (1987), The Tempest (1988) and King Lear (1990), The Recruiting Officer by George Farquhar (1992), The Cripple of Inishmaan by Martin McDonagh (1997), The Winter's Tale (2001), Mother Clap's Molly House by Mark Ravenhill (2001) and Henry V (play) (2003).

Hytner has also directed movies, such as The Crucible, The Madness of King George, The Object of My Affection and Center Stage. Openly gay, Hytner strove to avoid stereotypical gay characters in The Object of My Affection. The film was later criticized by some gay critics as a "commercial whitewash."[2]

Hytner is also a successful opera director with his production of Xerxes winning the Laurence Olivier Opera Award in 1985. Xerxes and his production of The Magic Flute are both still in the English National Opera repertory. He has also directed opera for Kent Opera, Covent Garden, Glyndebourne, Paris Opéra, Théâtre du Châtelet, Grand Théâtre de Genève and Bavarian State Opera.

Hytner was knighted in the 2010 New Years Honours List for services to drama.[3]


The National Theatre

Hytner was appointed director of the National Theatre in London in April 2003.[4]

Hytner's film version of the play The History Boys was released in 2006.





  1. ^ "Nicholas Hytner Biography". filmreference. 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-08.  
  2. ^ Matthew Hays (2000-05-11). "Dancing Queen". Montreal Mirror. Retrieved 2008-05-21.  
  3. ^ London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 59282, p. 1, 31 December 2009. Retrieved on 31 December 2009.
  4. ^ "National Theatre Departmental Glossary: Nicholas Hytner". National Theatre. May 2006. Retrieved 2008-05-21.  

External links


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