Having hosted a wide variety of events down through the decades, the famous Gate Theatre, Dublin is currently celebrating 80 years in the entertainment industry. Join us as we take a look at one of the institutions of theatre life in Dublin (and Ireland!) and as we check out the major upcoming events scheduled for “The Gate”.
The Gate Theatre is located on Cavendish Road, Parnell Square, Dublin 1. It was established in 1928 by Hilton Edwards and Micheál Mac Liammóir, however the building itself is over 200 years old. As the building wasn’t originally constructed as a theatre, there are continuing problems with storage facilities, lack of rehearsal rooms and accommodation for technical and office staff.
Over the years there have been refurbishment programmes, but really this wasn’t enough and so a new wing has been commissioned which will provide much needed space for the theatre.
On Sunday the 3rd of November 2009, some of the acting world’s finest will perform extracts of roles from former Gate productions. This event is to celebrate 80 years of Gate Theatre. Featured on the night are: Niamh Cusack, Barry Mc Govern, David Kelly and Alan Stanford, to name but a few of the 25 artists taking part.
Famous actors to “thread the boards” in the past include Ardal O’Hanlon,
Bill Golding, Eamon Morrissey, John Hurt and Penelope Wilson. Orson Welles and James Mason both started their careers here.
Upcoming productions include a new version of the Charles Dickens favourite, “The Old Curiosity Shop”, by Alan Stanford. The show premieres on Wednesday, the 3rd of December 2008, but you might be lucky and obtain a low price preview from Friday, the 28th of November.
Diary dates for 2009 include: ”The Real Thing”, by Tom Stoppard. This is the story of Henry, a playwright who can write about anything except love, begging the question “has someone captured Henry’s heart”? The show opens on Tuesday the 10th of February 2009, with low price previews available from Thursday the 5th of February.
“All my sons”, by award winning playwright Arthur Miller, opens on Tuesday, the 7th of April, 2009 with low price previews from Thursday the 2nd of April, 2009. The story is set after the 2nd World War and looks at two families trying to put their lives back together.
Not just confined to our “Fair City”, Gate productions have ventured quite a way from home. The Gate’s production of Samuel Beckett’s 19 plays in 1991 went on to be seen at the Barbican Centre in London and the Lincoln Centre in New York. In 2007 the Gate brought Beckett’s plays, “First Love” starring Ralph Fiennes, “Eh Joe”, starring Charles Dance, and “I’ll Go On”, starring Barry Mc Govern, to the Sydney Festival.
2009 also sees the Gate returning to the Sydney Festival again with a production of Brian Friel’s works. The writer is 80 on the 9th of January, so this makes an ideal birthday present.
Find out more about the Gate Theatre.
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For more on theatres in Dublin, read our article on Dublin’s Theatres