Jonathan Kaufman’s career in theatre: writing, directing and training the next generation

Jonathan has been writing and directing plays for over 25 years, and for over 10 years has been helping to train the next generation in acting, directing and scriptwriting. He is a passionate proponent of theatre for children and young people.

Jonathan’s Background and Early Career

After training as an actor at Rose Bruford College of Speech and Drama, Jonathan gained valuable experience by directing and co-writing 17 original family theatre shows at the Colour House Theatre (1995-98). This work helped establish his career and skills as a director.

Associate Director and Edinburgh Festival

He subsequently became an associate director at the Brockley Jack Theatre (1999-2001), which provided him with further opportunities to grow and develop as a theatre professional.

Jonathan’s progression continued as he and his brother took their original devised musical, School Ties, to the Edinburgh Festival in 2003 and 2005. This experience allowed him to showcase his work on a bigger stage and gain more exposure in the theatre world.

Founding Spontaneous Productions and Writing Short Plays

He started his theatre company Spontaneous Productions in 2007, and began a prolific stint as a writer of short plays in 2008, staged at various venues around London and the UK. This allowed him to showcase his talents as a playwright and further establish himself as a theatre professional. Since 2007, Spontaneous Productions has produced nearly 80 original theatre shows in and around the Sydenham area.

Creative Director of Sydenham Arts Festival

Jonathan’s career continued to develop when he became the Creative Director of Sydenham Arts Festival from 2009 to 2015, with Spontaneous Productions in residence from 2010.

Continued Success with Spontaneous Productions

Since 2017, Spontaneous Productions has continued to stage original work at venues around Sydenham: Sydenham Centre, in Mayow Park’s former bowling green, and more recently St Bart’s Church and Home Park, showcasing Jonathan’s ongoing progression and success as a theatre professional.

Theatre Highlights

  • Open-air performances of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Three Musketeers in the garden of the Dolphin Public House, Sydenham
  • A landmark production of The Remarkable Race of 1913
  • A four-part community musical Till the Boys Come Home in 2014, both staged as part of Sydenham Arts Festival
  • Several ‘site specific’ installations, including the National Museum of Luketia.

If you think you would like to get more involved in the theatre, check out our Get Creative pages, or volunteer with us!