Soho Artistic Director Morris Departs After 13 YearsDate: 12 January 2006
Soho Theatre artistic director Abigail Morris has left the company which, over the past 13 years, she has helped to build into one of London’s leading homes for new writing.
A spokesperson confirmed today that Morris left before Christmas, though she did not resign. Morris’ departure was, according to the spokesperson, a mutual agreement reached following several months of conversations between the director and the Soho board about the future of the organisation and Morris’ involvement with it.
The director had several stints away from Soho during 2005, including a sabbatical this past autumn when she was in New York directing the American premiere of Colder Than Here, the Laura Wade play which was commissioned by Soho and which had its world premiere at the theatre last February.
Soho will begin advertising the vacant artistic director position next month but has no set timeframe for recruitment. “We’ll make the appointment when we’ve got the right person and they’re ready to start,” the spokesperson told Whatsonstage.com. In the meantime, Jonathan Lloyd, who has filled in during Morris’ maternity leave and other absences, will continue as acting artistic director.
In a statement issued to Whatsonstage.com, Chair of Soho’s board Nicholas Allott said: “We are enormously grateful to Abigail for her contribution to the company over a long period of time, and I would particularly like to pay tribute to her vision and tenacity at a crucial stage in the theatre’s development. We wish her all the very best for the future.”
Founded in 1969 at Soho Poly and, from 1992 to 1995, based at the Cockpit Theatre near Edgware Road in London, Soho Theatre Company opened its current Dean Street home in 2000 (See News, 14 Mar 2000). The £10.6 million venue, which also houses a writers’ centre, became the West End's first ever purpose-built theatre for new work.
- by Terri Paddock