ARE YOU LOOKING FOR AN INSPIRATIONAL SPEAKER?
Dan is an Award-Winning Writer for Theatre, TV & Radio
Dan is currently writing the libretto and composing the music for his first folk opera (inspired by Shakespeare’s King Lear) – King Lear – A Gypsy Folk Opera, which opens in Budapest, Hungary in October 2020. His musical stage drama, Carmen – The Gypsy, which recently toured the UK following development at The National Theatre, is being performed in Madrid, Spain in December 2020. Carmen – The Gypsy was originally developed at the National Theatre and toured the UK in 2018. His multi award winning comedy, Bus Stop, was performed at the Tristan Bates theatre in London’s West End in 2019. Dan is giving the first ever full concert of his own music at The Seagull Theatre, Lowestoft in September 2020.
Dan’s other credits include Atching Tan (Stopping Place), an original 36 part radio series for R4, which was shortlisted for the BBC’s Richard Imison and Audio Drama Awards. He has developed original TV drama series for BBC TV and ITV Studios, and his debut film screenplay was co-winner of the Hothouse First Film Script Programme. For the stage he has worked with the Royal Court and the National Theatre and is founder and Artistic Director of the Romany Theatre Company, whose plays have toured nationally and produced work in association with the BBC. He was longlisted for the BBC TV Writers’ Programme in 2016 and shortlisted in 2017. He recently co-wrote an episode of the Danny Brocklehurst BBC R4 thriller series, Stone, adapted DH Lawrence’s novella The Virgin and the Gypsy also for R4. He also re-adapted the DH Lawrence radio drama into a musical for the stage in 2018 and took Lear and his Daughters, a musical stage play based on King Lear, into a week’s R&D at the New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich in 2019.
Carmen – The Gypsy
This musical stage drama, previously toured the UK in 2018, following development at The National Theatre.
Carmen – The Gypsy is soon to be performed in Madrid, Spain in December 2020.
Dan’s latest adaptation of DH Lawrence’s novella The Virgin and the Gypsy was also broadcast on BBC R4 in 2017.
Atching Tan was a multi-strand project that weaved together drama, history, and education.
The first element of Atching Tan was an exciting 36-part radio drama commissioned by BBC East. It is an exciting series that explores the relationships between members of the Gypsy, Romany and Traveller and settled communities in a rural village setting.
One of the objectives of the project was to break down the barriers of mistrust and misconception that exist between the Gypsy, Romany, and Travellers and settled communities.
“I’m very pleased that all six stations in our region are taking the series. Drama of this quality on local radio is great and to be part of such an exciting project is really good for BBC Three Counties.”
Mark Norman, BBC Three Counties Editor.
Our Big Land
Our Big Land is a play directed by Dan and directed by Amy Hodge. It is a brutal, bloody and beautiful drama, a ‘mystical, dark, epic poem’ according to Allum which centres on the ‘bauro diklo’, a sacred storytelling/fortune-telling shawl passed from mothers to daughters which symbolises Romani spirit and culture.
The play has toured across the UK and had a fantastic reception.
“Wistful songs, movement and text combine to create a show that has the hypnotic effect of a dream.”
Lyn Gardner, The Guardian.
27 Romany and non-Romany participants took part in the project which was a mix of grouptraining sessions and tutorials on creative writing, devising, performance, sight-reading and poster & programme design.
A Gypsy’s Wish
The project brought together 50 Gypsy, Romany, Traveller volunteers and over the course of three years their voices, their hopes, and their fears were transformed into a creative undertaking. Everyone who took part had the opportunity to try their hand at acting, directing, editing, filming, and writing, whatever their experience, or lack of it.
NATIONAL PLAY REVIEWS
“These pagan trappings – of blood and earth and sorcery carry an unnerving, visceral charge onstage.”
“There’s a brooding, bloody power in Dan Allum’s three-hander about Gypsy life, using music and ritual to hypnotic effect.”
“Magnificent original music.”
“There is an intelligent mixture of music, ballet and song which, along with the Romany music, take us into the mystical world that surrounds this people.”
“A fluid, heartrending, beautifully staged production … A must see.”
“Defines easy categorization… powerful… fascinating…”