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As the founding director of the Gate Theatre, I am most proud that my vision of the Gate, which was to introduce neglected international classics to a British audience, remains at the heart of its artistic policy today, 35 years on.  It has provided an early platform for so many aspiring directorial and acting talents, and of this I am extremely proud.

During the late 1970s and early 80s, the majority of plays on the British stage were inwardly British, both in content and style.   The Gate’s policy pointed outward, across the channel to Europe, and looked there for inspiration.  The truly bohemian, slightly scruffy and internationally mixed neighbourhood of Notting Hill Gate during that time was right for an inventive small theatre with a strong sense of identity.

The Gate Theatre is a true Cinderella story.  With little money and an awkward space, it has shown how a small theatre, led with courage, imagination and strong sense of what it is, can grow into one of the most important and internationally influential theatrical powerhouses of the past 35 years.

Lou Stein

Founding Artistic Director
1979-1995