Hampstead Theatre

Hampstead Theatre loses artistic director amid funding cuts

After 60 years, Hampstead Theatre will no longer be a venue for new-writing after it was cut from Arts Council England (ACE) National Portfolio Organisation and artistic director, Roxana Silbert, announced she was stepping down in wake of the cut.

The Camden venue received £766,455 per year being part of the ACE 2018 to 2022 portfolio but has received no funding in this year’s round.

The theatre announced that it will need to change to a new model and would no longer continue solely as a theatre for new-writing.

Silbert said: “Due to financial constraints, which are well documented, and after thorough reflection, it feels appropriate for me to resign my post at Hampstead Theatre. This has not been an easy decision.

“Hampstead will have to recalibrate and change in order to go forward and I wish it every success.

“I’d like to extend heartfelt thanks to all the staff, freelancers, writers and artists – on stage and backstage – for their wonderful contributions to the work on our stages and beyond. And, of course, to our audiences who have made everything worthwhile.”

Irene Dorner, chair of Hampstead Theatre, said: “Obviously, we have all been devastated by the cut to Hampstead’s grant, and we will all be very sad to see Roxana go. 

“She has been an inspirational leader for Hampstead and has directed some truly wonderful productions on both our stages. As part of our new strategy, we trust she will often be able to return to Hampstead as a visiting director.”

The theatre’s executive producer, Greg Ripley-Duggan, will be responsible for the transition to the new model.

Hampstead has a 60-year history of commissioning, developing, and producing new plays and has launched the career of many creatives over this period including, Harold Pinter, Abi Morgan, Hanif Kureishi and Mike Bartlett.

Featured image credit: Jim Osley / Hampstead Theatre, Swiss Cottage / CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

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