Meet The Old Vic 12 - Omar El-Khairy


On 5 December 2017 we announced The Old Vic 12 class of 2018 to the world. Consisting of writers, directors, designers, producers, composers and even a puppet maker, the group will spend the next year collaborating to create new work throughout our bicentenary year and beyond.

For the past 12 weeks we’ve been getting to know a different member of this talented company through 12 questions – for the final week, we caught up with writer Omar El-Khairy.

1. What’s your name?

Omar El-Khairy.

2. What do you do?

I’m a writer.

3. Who inspires you?

James Baldwin, Anselm Kiefer paintings, Akram Khan’s choreography, Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, A$AP Rocky’s swagger, Rihanna and Mario Balotelli.

4. What can’t you live without?

Music. And Leong’s Legend’s Shanghainese soup dumplings.

5. Theatre snacks – yay or nay?

Nope. And those cheesy nachos in the cinema?! Nuh.

6. Your favourite piece of trivia?

Michael Jackson’s Bad was meant to be a duet with Prince, but Prince was uncomfortable with the song’s opening line: ‘Your butt is mine.’ ‘Who’s singing that to whom?’ Prince asked at the time, ‘because you sure aren’t singing that to me.’

7. Last show you saw?

The Inheritance – and it’s an absolute banger!

8. One trick of the trade you’ve discovered

The life of a freelance artist will always be precarious, but learning to say no to projects that you’re not entirely drawn to is a crucial act of self-preservation.

9. Night owl or early bird?

An unreformed night owl.

10. Your life story in one short sentence

I should’ve taken sight-reading seriously at school – and be a jazz pianist (in Ambrose Akinmusire’s quartet) by now.

11. In one year you will have…

In one year, I’ll be skipping rope like a boss – and learning to box.

12. Old Vic 12 in one word


The Old Vic 12 is generously supported for 2017/18 by
Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, Robert Bourne, Nick Clarry, Hani Farsi, Nathalie & Nicolas Giauque, Laura & Nigel Mead and The Old Vic Impact Fund.

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