Shami Chakrabarti has joined us as the new Chair of the Board.
Shami Chakrabarti (Baroness Chakrabarti CBE PC) is a human rights lawyer and campaigner, Labour Peer and was Shadow Attorney General for England and Wales from September 2016 to April 2020. She was the Director of Liberty (the National Council for Civil Liberties), from 2003 to 2016 and its In House Counsel from 2001 to 2003. Prior to that she was at the bar and then a Home Office lawyer (1996-2001).
What made you want to work for the Gate?
Theatre at its best can be a wonderfully collaborative and democratic art form, bringing local and global unheard voices and audiences together in a public but still intimate space. It can win more hearts and change more minds than the worthiest polemics and speeches about justice and fairness. The Gate is a place to make this happen.
What are your top three values?
Liberty, Equality and the solidarity that can only come with empathy and love.
What three things could you not live without?
- Tragically perhaps, but honestly these days – some kind of smart electronic device which provides the ability to read, write, watch, listen, navigate and remember.
- The thrill of the city and other people.
- The ability to escape to the seaside or the hills and solitude.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t look down.
What’s a show you’ll never forget?
The one-night-only one-woman show of theatrical reminiscences that Vanessa Redgrave put on for her eightieth birthday. It was a totally spell-binding performance from an all-time great.
What do you hope to achieve in your new role?
I would like to be of support and encouragement to the wonderful Gate team and its many supporters, to help it find ever-new audiences and contributors and settle into its exciting new home.
Shami Chakrabarti is the new Chair of our Board. You can find out more about her background and our other trustees by clicking here.
Photos: Jo Metson Scott