Studio Andrew Todd
Andrew has run Studio Andrew Todd since its creation in 2004 and has been in independent practice as an architect and theatre consultant since 2001. He studied English at Cambridge where he was director of the touring European Theatre Group, and was awarded a high first for dissertation work on Tennyson. He qualified as an architect in 1995 at the University of Pennsylvania, where he studied with Ivan Illich, Joseph Rykwert and David Leatherbarrow. Upon graduating he moved to Paris where he gained professional experience in Jean Nouvel’s office; at the same time he was a correspondent for Giancarlo de Carlo’s review Space and Society. In 1996 he met the director Peter Brook, who invited him to collaborate on a research project which became the book The Open Circle – Peter Brook’s Theatre Environments (published by faber and faber in 2003). Studio Andrew Todd, under his direction, has developed a reputation as one of Europe’s leading young architectural firms (winning the prestigious Europe 40 under 40 prize in 2009). It has focused primarily on spaces for the performing arts, designing and building for clients such as the Old and Young Vic Theatres, Aberystwyth University, University of Sussex, Lausanne Opera, Molde Teatre Vert (in Norway), the Royal Festival Hall and the municipalities of Marseille, La Ciotat and Ris Orangis. Andrew’s approach to spaces for culture has been characterised by a close attention to the contour of creative energies. This has developed more recently into a deeply ecological approach to construction. The firm's recently completed Hardelot Elizabethan Theatre was decsribed by Le Moniteur as 'A masterpiece...in the manner of the Bilbao Guggenheim,' and is in the running for the Mies van der Rohe European Union Architecture Prize. Andrew remains active as a researcher, writer and teacher. He has written for The Guardian, Financial Times, Architecture d'Aujourd'hui, Architectural Review, The Enthusiast, Traces and Parametro, and has appeared as a commentator on BBC World News and Today. He has taught and lectured throughout Europe, America and in India. He is currently writing books on rhythm, on Shakespeare and on commonsense; is a founding board member of the ACAAT Association (dedicated to the question of vernacular architecture); and is a jazz drummer playing and recording at professional level. His recent book 'Common Sense' was named as essential reading by the Financial Times and is being developed as a staged lecture on tour. In 2011 he was named Chevalier des Arts et Lettres by the French Minister of Culture Frederick Mitterand for his services towards the synthesis of the arts. He is currently a Senior Fellow of Richard Sennett's Theatrum Mundi network, responsible for a five-year project seeking to change the paradigms by which spaces for culture are conceived, designed and used.