Directors of children's and youth theatre

Competence for the Audience

Directors for young theatregoers in Germany work at independent or municipal children’s and youth theatres, in the so-called “fourth sections” of municipal theatres, and increasingly also at municipal theatres that do not have a special section for a young audience. Theatre work for young audiences takes a diversity of forms, deals with a diversity of themes, and is artistically demanding.

When directors work for a young audience, they need to have a good command of creative stagecraft as well as knowing how to establish emotional and rational rapport with children and young people without giving up their own artistic identity. In developing creative ideas, it is part and parcel of a director’s work to include audiences and their experiences. Thus, directors research the real lives of their young audiences and take part in theatre education projects with children and young people in preparation for and alongside their stage production work.

Adult performers and young audiences unfamiliar with conventional modes of theatre reception have different levels of experience. Thus, directors have to pay special attention to the conditions for successful communication between the stage and the audience, making them experts in actor-audience interplay. Directors who stage productions for both adults and for young audiences use the creative experience they have gained in their theatre work for young audiences in their production work for adults. Conversely, their work for adults impacts on their children’s and youth theatre productions.
Gerd Taube


Philippe Besson © privat Brigitte Dethier © Tom Pingel
Philippe Besson Brigitte Dethier
Marcelo Diaz © privat Andrea Gronemeyer © Karola Prutek Dominik Günther © privat
Marcelo Diaz Andrea Gronemeyer Dominik Günther
Barbara Kölling © HELIOS Theater Anja Michaelis © Anne de Wolff Rüdiger Pape © Michael Oreal
Barbara Kölling Anja Michaelis Rüdiger Pape
Klaus Schumacher © Kerstin Schomburg Franziska Steiof © privat Martina van Boxen © privat
Klaus Schumacher Franziska Steiof Martina van Boxen
Kay Wuschek © Christian Brachwitz Yüksel Yolcu © Ferhat Yildir Jürgen Zielinski © Cora Steinbock
Kay Wuschek Yüksel Yolcu Jürgen Zielinski