The Gate Theatre was founded in 1928 and is one of the most stunning, historic buildings in Dublin. Over 250 years old and former assembly rooms, its beautiful pillars and intricate stone cornices are a sight to behold. Your experience once inside the Gate is in keeping with the building’s old-fashioned charm, from the chandeliers in the auditorium, to the tea served at the interval in delicate china cups, to the tuxedo-clad front-of-house manager welcoming you at the door.
The Gate keeps its repertoire pretty classic too, relying on the works of playwrights such as Arthur Miller, Oscar Wilde, Harold Pinter, Noel Coward, and celebrated Irish playwrights such as Brian Friel, Samuel Beckett and Sean O’Casey. Lavish productions with ornate sets and costumes are the norm.
The current show at the Gate (pictured), aptly timed for the 1916 centenary celebrations, is Juno and the Paycock by Sean O’Casey. Set in 1922, 6 years after the 1916 Rising, this is a classic and much-celebrated Irish play, directed by esteemed Irish playwright Mark O’Rowe, that examines how families coped in the aftermath of such a turbulent event in our nation’s history. At turns hilarious and deeply tragic, it’s the perfect way to see the human story behind the politics of our country’s rebellion against British rule.
Monday performances are cheapest at the Gate, at €27, with Tuesdays-Thursdays at €34, and Fridays and Saturdays at €37.50. It isn’t the cheapest ticket in the world, but the production values and quality of the work here make it a worthwhile treat.