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40 High Street
020 8232 1010
Nearest Tube/Train Station:
South Ealing
Watermans History

Watermans opened in 1984 and the very first event in the theatre was a concert by India's leading sitar player, Ravi Shankar. The idea for a centre to make good quality arts available to West London was the vision of Chiswick based actor, Peter Howells, shared by Hounslow Borough Council.

The venue was ideal for showcasing the best of small scale touring theatre and companies such as Shared Experience, Complicitè, and Red Shift. International theatre including productions part of the London International Festival of Theatre, were also staged. This tradition continues today with productions such as
Monsieur Ibrahim and the Flowers of the Qur'an by Dialogue Productions and Gertrude's Secret by Pure Bedlam Productions.

During the 1990s, the venue began prioritizing the development of Asian arts, beginning with bhangra concerts, dance performances & workshops, and later theatre, music, comedy & participative arts.

Some of the many individuals who honed their craft at Watermans include, Sanjeev Bhasker along with actress, Nina Wadia (currently in Eastenders), at a time when Asian comedy was considered an “alternative” activity. Comedians Shazia Mirza, Paul Chowdhury & Jeff Mirza are regular visitors, who test drive their Edinburgh material in front of a supportive audience. Comedy & Curry season is now an integral part of the programme.

Watermans has been a pioneer in developing British Asian theatre along with profiling international companies such as Platform theatre and Primetime Theatre Company. South Asian Language theatre is also a key programming area.

From the outset, Watermans gallery has provided a focus for visual and new media arts in West London. A recent commissioned work, Straitjacket Embrace was shortlisted for the Prix Ars Electronica 2008 while Signs of the City: Metropolis Speaking is a year long European youth media art project that pushes the boundaries of ‘participation' in art practice is currently showing.


Nearest Tube/Train Station:
South Ealing
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