MVO, film director and producer, former Head of BBC TV Classical Music and Performance and Head of Digital Development for BBC Arts
I first worked with Jonathan on the BBC film version of Mark Anthony Turnage's Greek, a contemporary masterpiece that Jonathan co-created as librettist and director. That award-winning production demonstrated so many of Jonathan’s salient qualities - boundless imagination, complete commitment and passion, the ability of getting everyone around him to give of their best and a seriousness of purpose leavened with a terrific sense of fun and joy in the creative process. I count that collaboration with Jonathan as one of the most precious and important of my life.
Jonathan’s contribution to contemporary opera is extremely significant - it was wonderful to be able to televise his highly succesful premiere stage productions of James MacMillans’ Ines de Castro and Michael Berkeley's Baa Baa Black Sheep on BBC television and Jonathan has continued to bring new music theatre work to life in Europe and North America with tireless energy, insight and creativity.
But of course Jonathan’s gifts extend way beyond the operatic stage and he is one of the most extraordinary and talented artists I have ever worked with. It is extremely rare to encounter someone who is equally at ease and impressive as writer, director and actor. To all these Jonathan brings his unique passion, technical skill, sensitivity, moral and human insight and humour, creating whole worlds to challenge, enchant, provoke and uplift us on so many levels.