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School of Arts and Media

Frances Piper

Director of Performance and Cultural Campus


After ten years working as a television and theatre director, Frances was offered the position of Senior Lecturer in Media Performance at The University of Salford. After several years in post she moved back into television, at Granada TV, and then became Head of the Arden School of Theatre, Manchester,  returning to The University of Salford (2006) where she now lectures in English and Drama.  She is also Joint Artistic Director of Ignition Stage Theatre Company. Her most recent production was Donal Fleet: A Confessional (Manchester Festival and Hampstead Theatre, London).

Publications/research interests: female Gothic literature; post-war and contemporary British drama; performance within and of literature/literary adaptation; screen adaptation. She is currently working with colleagues in Media and Business on the Digital Shakespeare project which aims to utilise Smart Phone/Web App technology in the teaching of Shakespeare in secondary schools.


Level 4 Introduction to Drama – lecture/seminar module

Level 5 Literature, Adaptation and the Screen: literature/film workshop/seminar module

Level 5 Theatre Adaptation: Writers and Devisers - drama/performance praxis workshop module

Level 5 The Female Gothic - literature & gender module.

Level 6 Director’s Workshop (Theatre) – drama/theatre/devising praxis

Level 6 British Theatre post-1950 – drama & gender module

Research Interests

New writing for the stage; adaptation/dramaturgy.

Joint Artistic Director, Ignition Stage Theatre Company.

Credits include:

When Medea Met Elvis (Adaptation/Devised/Director: 2003) The Robert Powell Theatre, Salford.

The Flies (Adaptation/Co-director: 2004) The Green Room Theatre, Manchester.

Mother Can You Hear Me (Devised/Director: 2005) Zion Arts Centre, Manchester.

Whose Dream is it Anyway? (Devised/Director: 2005) The Robert Powell Theatre, Salford.

The Opposite of Claustrophobic by Rob Johnson (Director: 2007) Didsbury Studio Theatre.

Donal Fleet: A Confessional by Sean Gregson (Director: 2009) Manchester Festival and The Hampstead Theatre, London.

Romeo XXXX (Adaptation/Devised/Director: 2010) Peel Park, Salford.

The Yellow Wallpaper (Adaptation/Director: 2011) Maxwell Studio, Salford.

The Love of the Nightingale by Timberlake Wertenbaker (Director: 2012) Crescent Café, Salford.

Other research interests include:

  • The use of Smart Phone/Web App technology in teaching Shakespeare
  • Female Gothic literature and film
  • The work of Arthur Hopcraft – adapter and screenwriter

Qualifications and Memberships

Member of NAWE


In addition to theatre/practice credits:

‘Spatial Parody, Theatricalisation and Constructions of ‘Self’ in Patricia Highsmith’s The Price of Salt and Carson McCullers’ The Ballad of the Sad Café’. In Women in Transit. Eds Teresa Gomez & Terry Gifford. London: Palgrave. Forthcoming Autumn 2013.

‘The city, the ‘self’, and the paradox of authenticity in George R Sims’ The Lights O’ London and John Galsworthy’s Justice’ in Origins of English Dramatic Modernism. Eds. Daniel Meyer-Dinkgraffe & Gregory Tague. New York: Academica Press. 2010.

‘Keeping Mum: Towards a Voix Maternelle in Howard Barker’s Wounds to the Face’.  In Consciousness, Literature and the Arts (Vol 7. No 2). 2006.

‘Critical Perspectives: Lee Hall, Jim Cartwright and Shelagh Stephenson’   2004.