Theatre News

Christopher Haydon steps down as artistic director of The Gate

Haydon will leave the Notting Hill venue in January 2017

Christopher Haydon
Christopher Haydon – "After five years at the helm I believe it is now time to pass the baton on to someone new."
© Dan Wooller

Christopher Haydon, artistic director of west London venue The Gate Theatre, has announced he will be stepping down from the post in January 2017 after five years of leading the company.

Haydon will continue programming for the theatre until May 2017, with his last season being announced later this year. His recently announced season Too Close To Home will be his penultimate at the Gate.

Commenting on his decision to leave the Gate, Haydon said it was not an easy choice: "I love this building, and the people I work with here, very very deeply. It has been an incredible honour to make work in this space, and I’m so proud of the things that we have achieved and the artists that we have championed together…

"After five years at the helm I believe it is now time to pass the baton on to someone new – to take this remarkable, tiny yet epic room, and make it their own. Whilst I am looking forward to pursuing a number of new freelance projects that will be announced soon, I will always be a little bit jealous of whoever it is that gets to run this theatre and continue driving it in to the future – they will have one of the best jobs in British theatre. My sincere thanks go to our staff, our audiences and our supporters."

Haydon took over as artistic director of the Gate in 2012, working with emerging writers, programming new writing and creating an equal 50/50 split of men and women on stage, and a 50/50 split across writers and directors combined. Artists of BAME heritage have also made up almost 40 per cent of those Haydon has employed.

Chair of the Gate Theatre Board, Joseph Smith, said today: "Put simply, Chris has been a brilliant artistic director for the Gate Theatre. Through his imaginative and visionary work as a director the Gate has flourished and taken its work across the country from its home in Notting Hill. Chris's strong commitment to new play development, diversity and community work has nurtured a new generation of artists who I have no doubt will be at the forefront of the theatre industry in the years to come."

The post of artistic director at the Gate Theatre will be advertised shortly.