1986 - 2003, extension 2008
Cavendish Row, Parnell Square, Dublin 1
PLAN Expo / OPUS Award - Highly Commended
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The Gate Theatre was founded in 1928 by Hilton Edwards and Mícheal MacLiammór to offer Dublin audiences an introduction to avant-garde theatre as well as classics from the modern Irish repertoire.
Michael Scott established his practice around the same time; STW has continued to work with the theatre since then, modifying the auditorium, extending the foyer, creating space for a bar and restoring the entrance of the landmark building to its original appearance. The new wing, providing a rehearsal room that can double as a small venue and improved get-in facilities, was completed to mark the theatre’s 80th anniversary.
When a large electricity substation on the site had to be relocated during advance planning for the Metro North underground station on Parnell Square East, the longstanding accommodation needs of the theatre could finally be met. In addition to providing a foyer for the Pillar Room beneath the auditorium, a booking office, theatre archive, offices, workshop, goods lift and scene dock, the new wing is home to the Gate Theatre Laboratory – a mellow, tented, oak-paneled rehearsal space, identical in size to the main stage but with the addition of one row of seating.
The crisp, cubic, granite-clad form of the extension is wholly contemporary but complements the protected structure; a deep incision in the façade establishes the new parapet line while drawing attention to the delicate details of the 250-year-old doorway. A filigree of meranti hardwood slats, set within the window system, lends a suitably veiled light to the rehearsal room.