I can highly recommend David as an actor and collaborator. A versatile, intelligent and energetic performer he is great to have on set and on the team. David is a very talented individual, always willing to share ideas and put in the time required to make the best possible project.

Andy Niblo—Director and writer Making Ugly (2011)

I would like to take a few moments to express my thank you and congratulations on an amazing performance by David Swain in his portrayal of Christopher Marlowe in the London debut of MARLOWE. To borrow a phase I learned in London…..BRILLIANT !

I met David for the first time at his audition for Marlowe. After reading his CV and watching his performance reel, I knew out of hand that he would be a man that I wanted to work with. My problem was not if I was going to offer him a role but which role to offer him. It was his versatility and range demonstrated that I had never encountered in my 30 years of theatre.

Still unsure of which principle role to cast David, I attended a production that he was performing in to see him work in from of a live audience. Again, I was astonished at the craftsmanship of this man. Once seeing him and his work, watching him control his scenes and the audience galvanized my thought that he was my Marlowe. This choice I would never once regret and manifested itself over and over again in both rehearsals as well as performance.

Many people say that they put 110% into their work and when time comes this proves to fall short of the mark. With David, this percentage is an understatement. His professional attitude and leadership within the cast was never in question. Prompt, prepared, enthusiastic, inventive, disciplined are all part of the makeup of David as both an actor and as a person. The Marlowe character is on for most of the play with dialogue that would tax and challenge any classically trained actor. From the first read David was more than just familiar with the text, but almost memorized. His thirst for understanding was unquenchable and his research impeccable and thorough. As his director, I could not have wanted more from an actor, as a playwright, I could not have wanted more from a fellow artist. He gave life to my Marlowe.

I can say only this, rarely do I hand out praise and never do I offer up idle and empty compliments. With the weight of so many years of theatre behind me, and working with so many skilled and talented actors, David Swain is placed amongst the best of them. A true artist of the theatre.

In conclusion, I would like to say that I hope that David and I will have an opportunity to work together again. This last comment should say everything.

I would welcome anyone to contact me if I can be of any other assistance or support for David.

D E Lillie—Director and Writer Marlowe (2011)

David Swain took what was an extraordinarily complex role and embued his character with an understanding and power that helped make ‘Stay With me Till Dawn’ such a success. A pleasure to direct and an actor with whom I look greatly forward to working with again.

Andy McQuade—Director Stay With Me Till Dawn for Second Skin Theatre. (2011)

From the first rehearsal with David on ‘Rob Is’ it was pleasing to come across an actor who brought so many fresh ideas to the role that we may or may not have initially considered. As the collaborative process continued, and some of those ideas were used in the final production whilst others discarded, it was refreshing to find David as one of those rare actors that didn’t get precious about it and sulk in the corner when one of his ideas were not met with applause. Rest assured though, some did. Changes or direction were met without hassle as we all worked towards what was best for the show as a whole. Thus, his memorable performances during the run were not only a reflection of his talents as an actor but a sign of the ease with which directing him had turned out to be. Trunkman Productions would certainly enjoy working with David again on future productions even though he eats far too many vegetable fritters for any sane man.

Trent Burton—Director and writer Rob Is (2009)

I’ve worked with David a few times now and he has been excellent every time. Friendly, easy to work with and great when he is in role. Happy to recommend him.

Aaron Simpson—Regional Manager of Neighbourhood Services, Peabody Trust (2009)

David Swain gave 200% commitment for his role as Caliban in a one hour adapted version of Shakespeare’s The Tempest. David’s eagerness and willingness to experiment with his character through rehearsals brought exciting unexpected elements to his character which aided not only himself but the play as a whole.

The moment David auditioned for Caliban – he instantly brought the character to life. As a director I felt extremely fortunate and to a degree ‘spoilt’ for working with David as his determination and creativeness are rare assets to find in many actors.

David also positively gave his assistance for technical support during the production when it was most needed. I always appreciated his work on and off stage as it did nothing but help carry the production to its final goal.

David Alonso—Director The Tempest (2009)

David Swain, one of those actors that you keep safe in a little black book. Versatile, engaging, extraordinary. We’ve worked together on several productions and I see no reason that I wouldn’t call him back again. Truthfully and as candidly as can be put, David is someone everyone should know.

Az Newman—Managing Director and Producer for Wrap Around Media (2009)

I directed David as Jacques in As You Like it for the Cambridge Shakespeare Festival. First of all David was an excellent company member – always smiling, positive, well prepared and relaxed. The part of Jacques is tough one to play. From day one David worked hard to get beneath the surface of the character and to make sense of the lines. He made strong decisions and every time he entered the stage he brought with him an excellent, strong, focused energy that took the scene somewhere new. He handled the verse very well. David worked exceptionally hard to keep his performance fresh every night, in the sections where he was in major he was always developing and exploring his performance, and so many wonderful moments were discovered. During this process David always listened to, respected, and took on board my opinion of what worked and (very occasionally) what didn’t. During sections where other actors depended on David supporting them he always hit his marks. What emerged was a wonderful performance that captured the spirit of Jacques and the play, and I would love to work with David again.

David Rowan—Associate Director to the Cambridge Shakespeare Festival, Director As You Like It. (2008)

David is extremely athletic and energetic on stage. He’s a great guy and likes a good joke.

Steve Young—Director, The Comedy Of Errors. (2008)

You are a great actor, I think you have special magnetism, which every director is looking for in actors.

Oleg Poutchnine—Director, Solo Night. (2008)

Engaging and fascinating to watch, David brings an imaginative freedom to the project. I commend his devoted, professional, honest approach especially as it was on a voluntary basis.

I demanded actors who were adaptable and were able to draw heavily on improvisational techniques while also working within a strict brief. He stood up to the challenge and far exceeded it.

David uses his talent to create an aura within the illuminated surface of the projected image, which subtly gravitates the work towards its intended content.

I thank him for his mesmerising and unforgettable contribution.

Kerry-Marie Davies—Artist. (2008)

I have had the pleasure to not only see David perform but also to work with him on one of my own video/theatre projects. The set up was a workshop I would film and the aim to explore an ambiguous and somewhat violent relationship between two male friends. The location was the underpass at the Spaghetti Junction in Birmingham.

The main part of the workshop was based around rather sketchy situations which I wanted David and his co-actor to improvise around (finding a pair of lady’s tights; riding on each others’ backs; playing around with two toy guns). For this to work I needed both commitment and a fair amount of fearlessness. David seemed as if made for this kind of thing. What followed was a focused improvisation and my job became not so much one of giving directions as keeping up with David and his co-actor.

At the end of the session I had so much more than I had bargained for, indeed I had enough footage for a short film (Friends). This would not have happened had it not been for David’s enthusiasm, inventiveness and generosity with alternative approaches when my own did not work. David partook in this workshop on a voluntary basis but his engagement was professional throughout.

It was a privilege to work with him and I hope I will be given the chance to do so again in the future.

Michael Akraka—Writer / Director, Friends. (2007)

David Swain is of that very rare breed of actors where devil may care bravery commingles successfully with complete dependability. His no holds barred approach is a delight to work with. You’ll never see David hold back. He’s bright and intuitive and will give it 100% whatever you ask of him. At the same time his professionalism is such that you can trust him to be there with the right head on, whatever the state of the world outside. His timekeeping and general attitude are impeccable. A rare and superb combination of attributes. Would there were more like him

Andy Jones—Director, Crescent Theatre, Birmingham. (2007)

David gives 110 per cent, is always ready to listen, and eager for intelligent debate. All of this makes him a great actor to work with, to direct, and to watch.

Robert F. Ball—Director, Shopping and Fucking. (2007)

When producing a low to no budget film it’s important to not only get the right actors for the roles, but also that they have the correct personalities to fit into the team and contribute in many areas of the production. I’m pleased to say that David is one such person. Although he originally auditioned for a different role in the production (Gift) both myself and the Director were very impressed with his versatility and offered him an equally important but totally opposite role. I’m pleased to say that we were both very pleased with David’s performance and it’s to his credit that someone who is naturally friendly and easy going in real life was able to bring so much menace to the role. On top of this David was also a great team member, easy to get along with and happy to help in any areas he could, from helping to shift props to keeping the cast and crew entertained.

Phillip Cooper—Producer EM Media, Gift. (2005)

David Swain convincingly played the role and took direction well. I would definitely recommend him as a humble, talented and responsive actor to work with.

James Eastope—Sugabowl Productions. Director, Cherry Orchard. (2004)

  1. Making Ugly Andy Niblo, Director and writer Making Ugly (2011)
  2. Marlowe D E Lillie, Director and Writer Marlowe (2011)
  3. Stay with me till Dawn Andy McQuade, Director Stay With Me Till Dawn for Second Skin Theatre. (2011)
  4. Rob Is Trent Burton, Director and writer Rob Is (2009)
  5. Aaron Simpson Aaron Simpson, Regional Manager of Neighbourhood Services, Peabody Trust (2009)
  6. The Tempest David Alonso, Director The Tempest (2009)
  7. Az Newman Az Newman, Managing Director and Producer for Wrap Around Media (2009)
  8. As You Like It David Rowan, Associate Director to the Cambridge Shakespeare Festival, Director As You Like It. (2008)
  9. The Comedy of Errors Steve Young, Director, The Comedy Of Errors. (2008)
  10. Solo Night Oleg Poutchnine, Director, Solo Night. (2008)
  11. Thou goest to women? Kerry-Marie Davies, Artist. (2008)
  12. Friends Michael Akraka, Writer / Director, Friends. (2007)
  13. Fallout Andy Jones, Director, Crescent Theatre, Birmingham. (2007)
  14. Shopping and Fucking Robert F. Ball, Director, Shopping and Fucking. (2007)
  15. Gift Phillip Cooper, Producer EM Media, Gift. (2005)
  16. Cherry Orchard James Eastope, Sugabowl Productions. Director, Cherry Orchard. (2004)


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