Courtyard Theatre moves to ShoreditchThe Stage News - 24th July 2007 London fringe venue the Courtyard Theatre, which was forced to find a new home following the Theatre Museum's closure, is to reopen in Hoxton Square this October.
The Courtyard had originally moved into the museum's studio theatre in Covent Garden while its King's Cross base was being refurbished. However circumstances changed when the museum shut down, the King's Cross building's owners decided to sell their north London site and the company was left without a home.
Now, it has secured a lease on the old Hoxton Library, which backs on to Hoxton Square and is near the White Cube art gallery in Shoreditch, east London. The move represents a significant expansion for the company, as it will operate two theatres at the new location - a 150-seat main space and an 80-seat studio.
There is also an additional rehearsal room, which has been used by companies such as English National Opera in the past, and a cafe area, which the organisation plans to turn into a wine bar. The venue will be run by joint artistic directors Tim Gill and June Abbott. Gill explained: "We've secured a 15-year lease on the building and first refusal after that. It's 7,000 sq ft and a lovely building.
"We'll be able to run two shows at the same time - it's an exciting time for us. We are obviously now back in the game and we're looking for shows for next year, from January."
The site will play host to a mixture of new work and classic revivals and Gill said he hoped to build up a reputation similar to that of the Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond.
The new site will open in October with Prime Theatre's production of Old World by Aleksei Arbuzov.
This will be followed by a revival of Restoration comedy The Beaux's Stratagem and new musical Sub-transmission.
Gill added that the site would be run in conjunction with the Courtyard's drama school, which will also be using the studio space for its performances.