Golden year for Hampstead Theatre with record number of award nominations

19:47 10 January 2013

Rupert Everett and Freddie Fox in Hampstead Theatre's sell-out show, The Judas Kiss. Picture: Manuel Harlan

Rupert Everett and Freddie Fox in Hampstead Theatre's sell-out show, The Judas Kiss. Picture: Manuel Harlan

Manuel Harlan

Hampstead Theatre has had one of its most successful years yet after securing more award nominations than ever before whilst selling out many of its shows.

The theatre, in Eton Avenue, Swiss Cottage, has received nine award nominations - more than double the amount of last season, and has attracted nearly 80,000 people to the venue over the past year.

Artistic director Edward Hall, 46, had the challenge of reviving the theatre’s reputation when he took up his post three years ago.

Since his arrival, the theatre has gone from strength to strength, obtaining a greater number of award nominations during his two seasons as artistic director than in previous years.

Mr Hall directed Hampstead Theatre’s sell-out show Chariots Of Fire, which is up for five awards, and has gone on to transfer to the West End. He has also received his own personal nomination for Best Director.

“It is always a great honour and very gratifying to be up for any nomination, but there are a lot of people behind me,” said Mr Hall. “It is just an illustration of what a great team effort it was putting that show on.”

The Awards were set up 12 years ago and remain unique as the official theatre-goers’ choice awards.

“It is very special to get a nomination from Whatsonstage because you feel like it is the punters that put you there,” said Mr Hall. “They’re very valuable because of that.”

The record-breaking sell out production of The Judas Kiss, written by Hampstead resident David Hare, is nominated for Best Play Revival and the play’s star Rupert Everett is up for Best Actor.

The theatre has continued to thrive despite losing its £74,000 grant from Camden Council, as well as having to pay additional business rates of £20,000.

It has had to cut staffing levels by a third whilst keeping the same output of work.

“We have a much smaller team who have a lot more responsibility,” explained Mr Hall. “It is a challenge working out how to make your resources stretch and work.

“Everything is shrinking and everyone is battening down the hatches. It is becoming harder and harder to produce work because there is not a lot of money in the public purse.

“However, in the middle of all that we are, as a theatre, appealing to an enormous group of people, and I am very excited about that. “What we have shown is the way that Hampstead Theatre has brought people into the borough to enjoy theatre, spend their money and contribute to the local economy.

“Just this year we have had 77,000 people come to the theatre. Half of them had never been to Hampstead Theatre before. I think people are enjoying the work, and word is spreading,” he said.

Hampstead Theatre is well-known for producing much of the capital’s new writing, both supporting and developing the work of new writers.

When Mr Hall first started at Hampstead Theatre he opened a studio hosting unpublished work to be tried and tested before being reviewed by the press.

“It is like an incubation unit where people are allowed to put their plays on and find out how they work and take them to a wider audience later on,” said Mr Hall.

“Since we opened it three years ago it has seen 18,000 people come to see shows.

The theatre’s other award nominations include Best New Play for Howard Brenton’s 55 Days and Best Supporting Actor for Mark Gatiss’ performance as Charles I.

Voting for the awards is open until the end of January and winners will be announced at a concert in February.


Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

The organiser of Belsize Christmas lights has issued a last-ditch appeal for funds to cover the final costs for this year’s decorations.

47 minutes ago

Up to 100 free superfast Wi-Fi terminals could be coming to Camden in a London first as BT looks to revolutionise its phone boxes.


Hampstead Theatre chiefs have paid tribute to a director of “huge skill” following his death at the age of 71.

The 2000-year-old relics originally from the West Bank are being marketed for $1million dollars in London as part of a unique exhibition


The number of council properties sold in Camden and Haringey in the last year has been revealed.

Yesterday, 18:04

Highgate residents are protesting against plans for a large home to be built between mansions of “great distinction”.

Yesterday, 17:46

An 89-year-old pensioner from Kentish Town who has severe dementia has been found.

Yesterday, 16:08

A group of angry Swiss Cottage residents have launched a campaign group to oppose plans by a private school to build new classrooms

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news


Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot


Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more. Boots is the number one choice when it comes to purchasing daily essentials.

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now