Bush Named London Theatre of the Year

Local venue "turned moving premises into artistic triumph"

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The Bush Theatre has been named 2011 London theatre of the Year in The Stage 100 Awards.

Explaining why the Shepherd's Bush theatre had been chosen for the awards, the judges said: " Rare is the venue that can turn moving premises into an artistic triumph, but the Bush Theatre did just that in 2011.

" It was a vintage year for the new writing venue as it traded up from its pub home to the former Shepherd’s Bush library.

" Highlights included its Schools Season, which provided a relevant and timely intervention in the free schools debate, tender farewell piece This is Where We Got to When You Came In, the year’s most ambitious response to the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible with Sixty Six Books and The Kitchen Sink, which one of our judges described as “one of the plays of the year”.

"The spirit of the Bush - its imagination and its enthusiasm - was summed up in Where’s My Seat? in which the team invited people to scrawl on post-it notes throughout its new building to review the space while watching a medley of new plays.

" If only more venues looked after their audiences so well. The venue will celebrate its 40th anniversary this year and artistic director Josie Rourke moves to the Donmar Warehouse to make room for Madani Younis. She will be a hard act to follow, especially after the bounty of 2011. "

The Bush responded by thanking its supporters on its blog with a message saying: " Thank you to everyone who nominated us for this award - we're thrilled. Some of the Bush staff will have to resist the urge to break their January detox with a celebratory drink later - but the rest of us will be toasting the start of another great year! "

The Bush Theatre is kicking off this 40th anniversary year with Our New Girl, an atmospheric family drama by Nancy Harris, the Pearson Playwright in Residence at the Bush.

The play begins with previews on January 12, 13, 14 and 16, then continues until February 11. You can find out more about booking tickets and about the play at the Bush website

The Bush Theatre has a special membership scheme called Bush Local for people who live or work within two miles of the theatre, including these entire postcodes: W2; W3; W4; W6; W8; W9; W10; W11, W12; W14; SW5; SW6; SW7; SW13; NW10.

Members are entitled to a range of special offers and discounts, including £10 tickets to previews, 10% off tickets to other performances plus drinks and food in the new Cafe Bar and invitations to exclusive events. Find out more and apply to join at Bush Local.

December 2, 2011