Stephanie Allison

Associate Artist

Stephanie studied Drama at Exeter University.

Director credits include: Romeo and Juliet ( Letchworth Broadway, St Albans Cathedral, OVO and Polesden Lacey); adaptor/director Little Women (OVO and Polesden Lacey). Movement Director credits include: Mosquitoes (Chichester Festival Theatre, Dukes Lancaster, The Maltings Theatre); The Threepenny Opera (OVO, Minack Theatre, The Cockpit); The Highwayman R&D (The Maltings Theatre); Julius Caesar (The Maltings Theatre); Peter Pan (Alban Arena, OVO).

Upcoming work includes: Director, Romeo and Juliet (National tour); Movement Director, The Highwayman (Norwich Theatre Playhouse, OVO, regional tour).

Helena Davies

Maltings Venue Manager

Helena studied technical theatre and stage management at RADA, following a stage management course at National Youth Theatre. After initially starting on OVO’s site construction team she has now moved into stage, site and venue management roles. Helena also works as a silversmith in her family business.

Amy Connery

Associate Artist

Amy trained with the National Youth Theatre and worked with the Battersea Arts Centre as part of their Homegrown programme. She studied ballet, tap, modern and jazz and later Drama at Exeter University where she also played her favourite role of Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors. Her acting appearances for OVO include Hero in Much Ado About Nothing and Annie in The Regina Monologues. Amy made her directing debut with Stephanie Jones in a co-production of Poison with OVO and Duality Theatre Company and most recently wrote and co- directed Scissor Sisters and Little Women. She was Movement Director for Peter Pan and Mosquitoes and Choreographer for The Winter’s Tale.

Simon Nicholas

Associate Artist and Founder

As a Co-Founder of OVO, Simon helped get the ball rolling, playing the Friar in the company’s inaugural production of Romeo and Juliet, with other highlights including Poison, Much Ado About Nothing and The 39 Steps. He pioneered the innovative use of film in the company’s work, including Romeo and Juliet, The New World Order, The Ladykillers, the lockdown Zoom sensation Twelfth Night Live and Mosquitoes, which has recently toured the country. Simon has built OVO’s theatre within the Roman Theatre for each of the festival’s ten years, as well as creating the sets for dozens of OVO shows including, at the Roman Theatre, As You Like It, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Much Ado About Nothing, The Winter’s Tale, Peter Pan, The Comedy of Errors, The Importance of Being Earnest, Little Women, A Christmas Carol, Romeo and Juliet, The Railway Children and The Threepenny Opera.

Adam Nichols

Artistic Director and Founder

Adam is the Artistic Director of OVO, the company he co-founded with Simon Nicholas in 2003.

Since 2011 he has led The Maltings Theatre in St Albans, turning a loss making venue which had been dark for two years into a profitable and critically acclaimed producing theatre.

In 2014 he co-founded the summer Open Air Festival at the historic 2,000 year old Roman Theatre of Verulamium which has grown to become one of the largest outdoor theatre festivals in the country, attracting over 12,000 visitors in 2022.

Directing credits include: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Merry Wives of Windsor (Roman Theatre of Verulamium); The Winter’s Tale, Much Ado About Nothing, As You Like It (Minack Theatre, Cornwall); Peter Pan (Alban Arena), Mosquitoes (National Tour), Beginning, Middle, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, The 39 Steps, Contractions, Macbeth, The Ladykillers (The Maltings Theatre), Twelfth Night (Rose Playhouse), The Importance of Being Earnest, Twelfth Night (Bridewell Theatre) and The New World Order (Edinburgh Fringe). Adam’s production of As You Like It won the 2016 Minack Trophy and was named as one of The Guardian’s top shows of 2019.

In 2020 Adam co-founded the Coalition for Open Air Theatre which was instrumental in persuading the government to reopen theatres after the first Covid lockdown.

In 2021 Adam was named in The Stage 100, the definitive guide to the most influential figures working in the UK theatre and performing arts industry today. He also featured in the UK Social Entrepreneur Index in 2019, 2020 and 2022.

These days Adam is rarely seen on stage but he had a successful career as a child actor, the highlight of which was being murdered by Antony Sher as one of the princes in the tower in the seminal Royal Shakespeare Company production of Richard III in 1985.

Away from the world of theatre, Adam has forged a successful parallel career in the education sector. He created a chain of schools across East Africa, spent 8 years as CEO of youth leadership charity Changemakers, was an advisor to Prime Ministers Brown and Cameron on education and youth policy and serves on the boards of a number of education organisations in the UK and around the world.

Mark O'Sullivan


Mark is a writer, actor and producer. He is best known for his C4 sitcom Lee and Dean which he wrote and played one of the leads. He created ITV drama Tell Me Everything, which has just premiered its second season. His Channel 4 documentary, My Sexual Abuse: The Sitcom broadcast in May this year to rave reviews. He continues to write alongside producing for OVO.

Janet Podd

Associate Artist

Janet has directed numerous productions for OVO since 2012, including Playhouse Creatures, The Crucible and Hedda Gabler, as well as co-directing many classic plays with OVO’s Artistic Director, Adam Nichols. She began her performing career in a number of roles in Oxford, including Sonya in Uncle Vanya at The Playhouse and Lika in The Promise at the Burton Rooms. Her directorial debut was Pinter’s The Birthday Party which toured Oxfordshire schools. She began the Drama Department at the North London Collegiate School where she directed over 40 plays, including two on the Edinburgh Fringe. Her work in opera includes Dido and Aeneas for the Scottish Music School and The Marriage of Figaro at Prior Park College, Bath.

Andy Sawford

Non-executive Director

Andy is Managing Partner and co-owner of the Connect Group.  He provides strategic advice and senior counsel on media and political strategy, issues management and crisis communications.  Andy draws on his experiences as a former Member of Parliament, representing Corby and serving as a Shadow Minister, member of a Select Committee and Bill Committees.  Prior to this, Andy was Chief Executive of the LGIU, an award winning thinktank and membership body for UK local government.  Andy’s other experience includes being Vice President of the Local Government Association, trustee of the Centre for Public Scrutiny and Board Chair of Local Energy Ltd, a social enterprise business. Andy has worked in the European Parliament and with the EU Committee of the Regions.  He has also served as a councillor and local authority Cabinet Member in Dartford, Kent.   Andy is a Board Member of the Public Relations Consultants Association and Vice Chair of Governors at the Kettering Buccleuch Academy.  Andy features in the PR Week Powerbook of leading figures in public relations.

Martin Sharman

Operations Director

Biography coming soon

Kelly Ann Stewart

Associate Director

Having trained at Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and studied English Literature at the University of Cambridge, Kelly has a passion for re-imagining classic plays, making them accessible and exciting for a new audience.

Directing credits include: Jekyll and Hyde (Food for Thought, Pitt Rivers Museum), Singin’ in the Rain (ADC Theatre, Cambridge), King Lear and Much Ado About Nothing (Siege Theatre, Oxford Shakespeare Festival). For OVO she has directed  The Changeling R&D (2023), The Essence of Greek Tragedy (2023), Gawain and The Green Knight (2024), and The Merchant of Venice (2024). As an Associate Director for OVO, Kelly has also been on the directing team behind Beginning/Middle (2022), Private Lives (2023), The Railway Children (2023), and The Merry Wives of Windsor (2024).

Kelly also does the graphic design work for OVO, and specialises in dramaturgical work for new writing, as well as BSL-integrated theatre.

Faith Turner

Associate Artist

Faith has acted with OVO for over a decade – most recently as Jenny in Mosquitoes, the Professor in Little Women and the title role in Hedda Gabler. She studied Political Philosophy and Text in Performance at York University, where her interest in theatre as a vehicle for change led her to work within Education. She has since enjoyed working with a range of theatre companies, practitioners and performing arts schools, including 10 years as Deputy Director of Drama at St Paul’s Girls’ School, London. With a love of devising and physical theatre, she has created and directed young people in numerous productions; highlights include The Permanent Way by David Hare, Rachel Cusk’s Medea, Sarah Ruhl’s Eurydice and many original pieces of verbatim theatre.

Faith runs OVO’s Community Ensemble alongside associate artist, Janet Podd. Productions include The Secret Garden (2024).

Kiffer Weisselberg

Non-executive Director

Biography coming soon

David Widdowson


David is a Partner at Abbiss Cadres LLP. He qualified as a solicitor in 1985, having spent four years prior to that in HR management. He has built highly regarded employment law teams in two large commercial law firms in the City of London and enjoys a reputation as a leading employment lawyer. He has been a member of the Employment Lawyers Association since its inception and has served on its Legislative and Policy Committee since 1994, engaging regularly with Government on legislative reform. In addition to his legal skills David is a qualified mediator and a member of the World Association of Business Coaches.

As an actor, David made his OVO debut in 2003 in The New World Order. He played Ford in OVO’s two previous productions of The Merry Wives of Windsor. Other OVO highlights include the title role in Macbeth (three times), Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the Duke in Measure for Measure, Jaques in As You Like It, Inspector Goole in An Inspector Calls, Danforth in The Crucible and Scrooge in A Christmas Carol. He is currently studying for an MA in Shakespeare and Theatre at the Shakespeare Institute at the University of Birmingham and has provided voiceovers for a number of their recent productions.

Emma Wright

Casting Director

Emma was part of the 2020 cast of The Merry Wives of Windsor. Recent appearances for OVO include Mother in The Railway Children, Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Miss Prism in The Importance of Being Earnest, Merteuil in Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Dorothea/Emilia in The Winter’s Tale, Witch in Macbeth and Hester in The Deep Blue Sea. Screen includes feature film Yes Man, web series Writing A Short (4Deuce) and forthcoming biopic series Gandhi (Applause Entertainment).