The Future of Audience: An Evening with Sarah Ellis, Royal Shakespeare Company

WiTT was delighted to start 2020 off with a bang, with a very special evening with the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Director of Digital Development, Sarah Ellis. Sarah spoke about the RSC’s innovative and collaborative approach to working with digital technology; recent partnerships the RSC has put in place and is exploring; how technology was used in its 2018 production of The Tempest; and how interactions with audiences will evolve through the use of AR, VR, and other technologies. She also gave us a small preview of the RSC’s plans for a new digital production.


This wasan event for WiTT individual and corporate members only. For information on WiTT membership, please email

WiTT would like to thank Sarah for speaking and DLA Piper for hosting this fantastic evening.



Sarah Ellis
Director of Digital Development
Royal Shakespeare Company

Sarah Ellis is an award-winning producer currently working as Director of Digital Development for the Royal Shakespeare Company to explore new artistic initiatives and partnerships.

The latest partnership for the RSC is the Audience of the Future Live Performance Demonstrator funded by Innovate UK – a consortium consisting of arts organisations, research partners and technology companies to explore the future of performances and real-time immersive experiences.

In 2017, she became a fellow of the University of Worcester for her work in the arts and technology. In 2016 she was awarded The Hospital Club & Creatives Industries award for cross industry collaboration for her work on the RSC’s The Tempest in collaboration with Intel and in association with The Imaginarium Studios.

In 2013 she was listed in the top 100 most influential people working in Gaming and Technology by The Hospital Club and Guardian Culture Professionals. In partnership with Google, she produced Midsummer Night’s Dreaming winning two Lovie Awards for Innovation and Experimentation.

In 2012, she produced myShakespeare an online commissioning platform for the World Shakespeare Festival. In 2011, she produced Adelaide Road for the RSC, which mixed live performance with an app and website map.

As a spoken word producer, she has worked with the Old Vic Tunnels, Battersea Arts Centre, Birmingham REP, Contact, Improbable, Southbank Centre, Soho Theatre, and Shunt. She has been Head of Creative Programmes at the Albany Theatre and Programme Manager for Apples & Snakes.

She is a regular speaker and commentator on digital arts practice, as well as an Industry Champion for the Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre, which helps inform academic research on the creative industries to lead to better policies for the sector. She has been appointed Chair of digital agency, The Space, established by Arts Council England and the BBC to help promote digital engagement across the arts.