Dr Elizabeth Kuti

Head of Department - Senior Lecturer (R)
Department of Literature Film and Theatre Studies (LiFTS)
Dr Elizabeth Kuti
  • Email

  • Telephone

    +44 (0) 1206 873408

  • Location

    5NW.6.13, Colchester Campus



Elizabeth Kuti is Senior Lecturer in Drama, and her teaching focuses on literature, theatre history, playwriting, and other theatre-related modules. Her research specialisms are in dramatic writing, contemporary drama and theatre history, especially of the eighteenth century. She is currently working on an AHRC-funded Global Challenges research project, 'Tales of Spring and Winter: Gender, Histories and Intergenerational Exchange in Global Theatre', for which she is researching and writing a new play, a reworking of Shakespeare's A Winter's Tale, called Cold Season in Calcutta, set in Calcutta in 1775. Other projects include an enquiry into free speech, in the form of a new play, Blue Pencil, to be staged at the Sainsbury Theatre in 2018; and a BBC commission, The People of the Sea, a creative response to David Thomson's classic collection of selkie stories. Before joining the Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies in 2004, she worked extensively as a playwright and actor in Irish theatre, where her roles included the title role in The Colleen Bawn (Abbey Theatre, Dublin, and Lyttelton Theatre, NT, London) and Olivia in Twelfth Night (Lyric Theatre, Belfast). As a playwright, her work for theatre includes Treehouses (Peacock Theatre, Dublin); The Whisperers (Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh and Irish tour); The Sugar Wife (Project Arts Centre, Dublin and Soho Theatre, London); and The Six-Days World (Finborough Theatre, London; developed while on attachment at National Theatre Studio). She has written extensively for BBC radio, including Reader I Mended Him - a new ending for Jane Eyre - short stories, Strandgade 30 and That Door; two series of Dear Mr Spectator for Radio 4 Womans Hour; numerous Afternoon dramas including May Child (starring Patricia Routledge) and a Drama on 3 about Henry Fielding and the advent of theatre censorship, Mr Fielding's Scandalshop. She has been awarded the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize for The Sugar Wife and the Stewart Parker Radio award for Treehouses. Her play commissioned by the National Theatre, United Incandescent has received readings at the Vanburgh Theatre and the Old Red Lion. Since 2014 she has worked as a writer for Historic Royal Palaces, and her micro-dramas exploring lesser known aspects of life at court in the period 1516 - 1730, have been seen by visitors to Hampton Court Palace since 2015. She would particularly welcome PhD applications in the following areas: Contemporary playwrights and new writing for the stage Theatre, literature and drama in the long eighteenth century Women's writing' theatre and gender Playwriting, radio drama and creative writing


  • BA Oxon

  • PhD Trinity College Dublin

  • MA King's College London and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, (1992)

Research and professional activities

Conferences and presentations

Edith Craig: Staging Suffragettes

Invited presentation, Keynote presentation, Theatre Royal Norwich Heritage Week, Theatre Royal Norwich, 14/9/2018

Teaching and supervision

Current teaching responsibilities

  • Performing Shakespeare (TH205)

  • Models of Practice (TH241)

Previous supervision

Mona Barbara Becker
Mona Barbara Becker
Thesis title: Flieder, 1945 / Lilac, 2015 Visibility, Memory, Gender: Writing and Re-Imagining National Socialist Atrocity for the Stage
Degree subject: Theatre Studies (Playwriting)
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 7/5/2019
David Jonathan Crane
David Jonathan Crane
Thesis title: Sudleigh: Place and Politics in the Modern Short Story
Degree subject: Creative Writing
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 7/9/2018
Rachel Hannah Nolson
Rachel Hannah Nolson
Thesis title: Gothic Stirrings on the Georgian Stage, 1740-1780
Degree subject: Literature
Degree type: Master of Arts (by Dissertation)
Awarded date: 9/1/2018
Gabriela Silva Rivero
Gabriela Silva Rivero
Thesis title: The Head Knows What Lies Near the Heart: An Anatomy in Stories, and Accompanying Essay
Degree subject: Creative Writing
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 15/9/2017
Majeed Mohammed Midhin Midhin
Majeed Mohammed Midhin Midhin
Thesis title: The Artist as a Character in British Theatre, 1970 - 2010: Stoppard, Barker, Wertenbaker
Degree subject: Literature
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 4/7/2017
Danae Brook
Danae Brook
Thesis title: 'Parallel Worlds: The Press on Stage and Screen. a Comparative Exploration of Television, Screenwriting and Playwriting'
Degree subject: Literature
Degree type: Master of Philosophy
Awarded date: 13/6/2017


Journal articles (1)

Kuti, E., (2008). Tragic Plots from Bootle to Baghdad. Contemporary Theatre Review. 18 (4), 457-469

Books (1)

Kuti, E., (2013). Fishskin Trousers. Nick Hern Books. 9781848423626

Book chapters (1)

Kuti, E., (2012). '"Strangeness Made Sense": On being a Non-Irish, Irish Playwright'. In: Irish Drama: Global and Local Perspectives. Editors: Grene, N. and Lonergan, P., . Carysfort Press

Media (1)

Kuti, E., Sea Longing - a radio drama for BBC Radio 3.

Other (11)

Kuti, E., (2016).Encounters with the Past,Historic Royal Palaces, Hampton Court

Kuti, E., (2016).Reader, I Mended Him,BBC Radio 4

Kuti, E., (2015).United Incandescent,Rehearsed reading, Old Red Lion Theatre Pub, London

Kuti, E., (2015).Time Plays,Historic Royal Palaces, Hampton Court

Kuti, E., (2015).Lefter Than Thou,Royal Academy of Dramatic Art playreadings series

Kuti, E., (2015).Strandgade 30,BBC Radio 4. Sitters? Stories

Kuti, E., (2014).The Broken Token,John Gielgud Studio (RADA Festival) & Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds

Kuti, E., (2013).Scheherazade, Blue-beard and Theatrical Curiosity,New York University Press

Kuti, E., (2010).Dear Mr Spectator, Series 2,BBC

Kuti, E., (2009).Dear Mr Spectator, Series 1,BBC

Kuti, E., (2009).Short story for radio: That Door,BBC

Grants and funding


Tales of Spring and Winter: Gender, Histories and Intergenerational Exchange in Global Theatre

Arts And Humanities Research Council


Imagining the Nation from the Eastern Fringe: the Norwich Company of Comedians, 1811-1845

The British Academy


Staging the East in the British Theatre

The British Academy

+44 (0) 1206 873408


5NW.6.13, Colchester Campus