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Our Story

The Hope Theatre is a place for audiences and theatre-makers to explore big ideas. An award-winning 50-seater black-box theatre above the world-famous Hope and Anchor pub on Upper Street, we love telling stories that are dramatic, surprising, and have something to say about the world we are living in now.

We opened in November 2013, and were the first Off-West End venue to open with a house agreement with Equity, the UK's largest performers union, to ensure a legal wage for all actors, stage managers and box office staff working at the theatre.

Productions at the Hope Theatre have previously transferred to the West End (USHERS: THE FOH MUSICAL to the Charing Cross Theatre, and Snoo Wilson's LOVESONG OF THE ELECTRIC BEAR to the Arts Theatre) and we have been home to many world premieres, including the professional world premiere of Joe Orton's FRED AND MADGE.

The Hope receives no regular public subsidy - we rely on ticket-sales and donations for our continued existence. You can find out more about how you can support us on the SUPPORT US page.

The Hope & Anchor

The Hope Theatre is located on the first floor of The Hope and Anchor pub. The building can trace its history back to 1880 and became well-known as a punk and rock venue in the 1970s and 1980s. The pub is now owned and run by Greene King brewery, and is a hotspot for music- and theatre-lovers alike.

Notable acts to have played at the venue include:


In-House Productions

The first in-house production under inaugural Artistic Director Matthew Parker was the European premiere of Snoo Wilson's LOVESONG OF THE ELECTRIC BEAR in early 2015. The production transferred to The Arts Theatre in the West End.

In 2016, there were three in-house productions: SEA LIFE, a dark and magical comedy by Lucy Catherine, STEEL MAGNOLIAS in the summer, and HER ACHING HEART, a bonkbusting, boddice-ripping musical by Bryony Lavery.

In 2017, we produced the 40th anniversary revival of Dennis Potter's controversial masterpiece BRIMSTONE & TREACLE, and in 2018 we staged the world premiere of Robin Hooper's play FOUL PAGES, and also a new production of Ionesco's rarely-produced absurdist classic THE LESSON.

In 2019, we staged three revivals: Joe Orton's THE RUFFIAN ON THE STAIR, directed by our patron Paul Clayton, true-crime musical THRILL ME: THE LEOPOLD & LOEB STORYwhich later transferred to Jermyn Street Theatre, and Wendy MacLeod's dark comic drama THE HOUSE OF YES.

Kennedy Bloomer was appointed Artistic Director in 2019, and steered us through our sixteen-month closure during the coronavirus pandemic. Whilst our doors were closed, we produced HOPE AT HOME, a series of five online short films. We reopened in June 2021 and presented two in-house productions later that year: FEVER PITCH, a new adaptation of Nick Hornby's memoir about his lifelong obsession with Arsenal FC, and 21 ROUND FOR CHRISTMAS, co-written and directed by Associate Director Toby Hampton.

At the end of 2021 Phil Bartlett became the Hope Theatre's new Artistic Director. The following year he directed the UK professional premiere of dark comedy THE MOORS, performed by a cast of six recent graduates whose training had been interrupted by the pandemic. In 2023, we produced SNAKEHEAD, Samuel Rees and Max Welton's gig-theatre reimagining of the Medusa story.  

In February 2024 it was announced that the Spring 2024 season would be the final season of The Hope Theatre in its current incarnation.

Click here to read our Spring 2024 season announcement

Click here for information on the future of the Hope Theatre
The Hope Theatre is managed by Solar Plexus Productions Limited. Registered in England and Wales. Company No: 09175959. Solar Plexus Productions Limited is a Registered Charity. Charity No: 1162904. Registered Address: Flat 3, 120 Prince of Wales Road, London, NW5 3NE.

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