Sunday 28 May 2017

Cartmell new boss of Gate as Colgan bows out after 33 years

Selina Cartmell: first female director of The Gate
Selina Cartmell: first female director of The Gate
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

After months of speculation and whispers in the wings, the Gate Theatre has named Selina Cartmell as the its new director.

Ms Cartmell will take over from Michael Colgan, who will step down in April 2017 after 33 years with the theatre.

Originally from Cumbria, England, Ms Cartmell will become the theatre's first female director and the fourth person to hold the title in the Gate's 88-year history.

Last night, Mr Colgan congratulated her on her appointment, saying: "I have loved every minute, every second of working in that beautiful theatre. I hope Selina loves it as much as I have.

"She is an enormous talent and I am a great admirer of her work."

MS Cartmell will begin working at the theatre in January, following in the footsteps of Michael MacLiammoir, Hilton Edwards and Mr Colgan.

A graduate of Trinity College Dublin's Samuel Beckett Centre, Cartmell is an acclaimed director and has staged work at The Abbey and London's Royal Court. She is currently working on Belfast's Lyric Theatre's production of 'Three Sisters'.

She described her new Gate role as "an honour" and the theatre itself as "the most inspiring theatre space" in Ireland.

"As the new director, I will be both an enabler and a programmer," she said.

Michael Colgan leaves a rich legacy behind him.

Under his watch, The Gate has become renowned for staging the works of Harold Pinter, Samuel Beckett and Brian Friel.

Known for his powers of persuasion, Mr Colgan managed to convince performers such as Michael Gambon, Ralph Fiennes, Penelope Wilton and Cynthia Nixon to perform in Gate productions.

He also received the Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the French government in 2007, and an OBE from Queen Elizabeth in 2010.

"It is the right time to leave," he said yesterday. "I am extremely proud of my time there and I will miss that building terribly."

Irish Independent

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