1. One that supports, protects, or champions someone or something, such as an institution, event, or cause; a sponsor or benefactor: a patron of the arts.
We greatly value the support, encouragement and enthusiasm of our Patrons, who provide us with the benefit of their considerable experience with regard to both the creative and business aspects of running the company, but also the political, social and artistic ethos The Liberty Tree promotes.
Patrons In Alphabetical Order:
Tariq Ali has been a leading figure of the international left since the 60s. He is a long-standing editor of the New Left Review and a political commentator published on every continent. He was born in Lahore in 1943 and educated at Oxford University, where he became involved in student politics, in particular with the movement against the war in Vietnam. On graduating he led the Vietnam Solidarity Campaign. He owned his own independent television production company, Bandung, which produced programmes for Channel 4 in the UK during the 1980-90’s. He is Chairman of Verso Books.
His fiction includes the Islam Quintet, translated in over a dozen languages: the Quintet is a series of historical novels about Islam: Shadows of the Pomegranate Tree (1992), The Book of Saladin (1998), The Stone Woman (2000), Sultan in Palermo (2005) and the Night of the Golden Butterfly. His non-fiction includes 1968: Marching in the Streets (1998), a social history of the 1960s. A book of essays, The Clash of Fundamentalisms, was published in 2002, followed by Bush in Babylon (2003), Pirates of the Caribbean (2005) and Conversations with Edward Said (2005); Rough Music: Blair, Bombs, Baghdad, London, Terror (2005); and Speaking of Empire and Resistance (2005), which takes the form of a series of conversations with the author. The Leopard and the Fox (2007) is the script of a three-part TV series commissioned by the BBC and later withdrawn, and includes the background to the story. He published The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power, in 2008 and most recently, The Protocols of the Elders of Sodom: and other Essays (2009), The Idea of Communism (2009), The Obama Syndrome: Surrender at Home, War Abroad (2010) and On History: Tariq Ali and Oliver Stone in Conversation (2011) .
His theatrical work includes Iranian Nights, Moscow Gold, Ugly Rumours (co-written with Howard Brenton), Necklaces, The Illustrious Corpse and most recently The New Adventures of Don Quixote (commissioned by a German theatre in 2012 and currently playing at the Grillo Theatre in Essen)
Mike Bradwell trained at East Fifteen Acting School. He played Norman in Mike Leigh’s award winning film Bleak Moments and worked as an Underwater Escapologist and Fireater with Hirst’s Charivari and as an Actor / Musician with the Ken Campbell Roadshow.
He founded Hull Truck Theatre Company in 1971 and directed all their shows for 10 years including his own devised plays Oh What!, Bridget’s House, A Bed Of Roses, Ooh La La! and Still Crazy After All These Years. Hull Truck toured nationally and internationally and was the first British Fringe company to be invited to the National Theatre and to create work for BBC Television.
Mike has directed over 40 shows for The Bush Theatre where he was Artistic Director from 1996 to 2007. And directed productions at The Almeida, The Riverside, Stratford East, The Tricycle Theatre, West Yorkshire Playhouse, King’s Head Theatre, Hampstead Theatre, The Science Fiction Theatre Of Liverpool & The National Theatre Of Brent.
Mike has also written and directed for film, television and radio including The Writing On The Wall, Games Without Frontiers, Chains Of Love, Happy Feet, and I Am A Donut.
Mike’s 2010 production of D.C Moore’s The Empire at the Royal Court was nominated for both the Olivier and Evening Standard Awards and won the TMA Award for best touring production.
His book on alternative theatre, The Reluctant Escapologist was nominated for the Sheridan Morley Prize and won the STR Theatre Book of the Year Award. Mike’s new book on devising and directing, Inventing The Truth will be published by Nick Hern Books in Spring 2012.
Molly Case, is a 25-year-old performance poet and novelist from South London, who’s also currently training to be a nurse the University of Greenwich. In April 2013 she achieved a national profile after she read her poem “Nursing The Nation” at the Royal College Of Nursing Annual Congress and got a standing ovation for her efforts. The You Tube video of the performance went viral (over 320,000 viewings) and Molly became a creative heroine, uniting the millions of public sector workers suffering under the ConDems regime of demonisation and austerity.
Molly is studying to complete her nurse training but continuing to write under her pen name R.I. Macey.
Nicolas Kent started his career at Liverpool Playhouse in 1967 as an ABC TV trainee regional theatre director. In 1970 he became Artistic Director of the Watermill Theatre, from 1970-72 Associate Director of the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh and from 1976-81 Administrative Director of The Oxford Playhouse Company. From 1984-2012 he was Artistic Director of the Tricycle Theatre in London.
He has directed productions in over 100 theatres around the world including the West End and New York; as well as for notable companies in Great Britain including The National Theatre, The Royal Shakespeare Company, The Royal Court, The Donmar Warehouse, The Hampstead Theatre, the Lyric Theatre Hammersmith and the Young Vic.
He is probably best known for the political work he did at Tricycle Theatre, where the verbatim plays he directed became known as the Tricycle Tribunal plays, and included The Colour of Justice (the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry), Nuremberg, Srebrenica, Bloody Sunday and Guantanamo. Most of which were broadcast by the BBC, and two which were performed in the Houses of Parliament and on Capitol Hill.
He has also directed many plays in the USA both regionally and in New York, on television for the BBC and for BBC radio.
Roland Muldoon studied Stage Management at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School and in 1963 joined the Unity Theatre before setting up the legendary underground political theatre group CAST  (Cartoon Archetypical Slogan Theatre). Their anti Vietnam play John D Muggins is Dead played in the Festival Hall and appeared in Peter Brooks U. S. at the Roundhouse.
In 1976 CAST won an annual Arts Council Grant and they began a ten-year period of writing two plays a year; the most toured being The Return of Sam The Man M.P a comic tragedy of the decline of the Labour Party. 1980, Roland received a Village Voice Obie award for his one-man play, “Confessions of a Socialist”.
In 1982, CAST created the New Variety circuit in London promoting a new wave of alternative comedy. Which went on to receive support from the Greater London Council, enabling it to run eight venues throughout London and establish the first modern comedy circuit? With performers such as Paul Merton the Joeys, Harry Enfield, Jo Brand Julian Clary and others, too many to mention.
In 1986, Roland, Claire and others from CAST took over the iconic Variety Theatre, the Hackney Empire. Setting about modernising and restoring this jewel in the crown of the East End. The 1300 seat Hackney Empire became a permanent base for their operations and ambitions. Roland became Theatre Director and the building was re-opened on 9 December 1986. It went on to establish itself as one of the leading stand-up comedy venues in Britain, where many of today’s top comedians got their first break.
He has in collaboration with his partner Claire and ex-Hackney Empire colleagues Frank Sweeney and Tony Goodrick, established the entertainment company New Variety Lives which produces and promotes the annual national comedy competition ‘The New Acts of The Year’ (The NATYS)