Landmark Gateway venue to close its doors

The Barnyard owner, Debbie Davidson.
The Barnyard owner, Debbie Davidson.

THE Barnyard at Gateway, that’s played host to more than 100 major productions and numerous charity events over a 15-year-period, is closing. The owner of the popular venue Debbie Davidson, said the news that The Barnyard Theatre Productions were terminating their franchise as of 31 December 2016 came as ‘an enormous shock’.

“It is with a very heavy heart, and a great deal of sadness, that we have to inform our loyal patrons that The Barnyard Theatre at Gateway will be permanently be closing its big wooden doors. A desperate bid to keep the venue going for at least another year was unsuccessful and unfortunately we’ve reached the point where the show cannot go on.”

The Barnyard Theatre at Gateway shook up the Durban supper-theatre scene, when they opened the 470-seater venue on 2 November 2001.  They were awarded a Marketing Excellence Award from the Institute of Marketing Management while Davidson was the recipient of the Umhlanga Business Personality of the Year from the Durban Chamber of Commerce.

As a parting shot Davidson said: “I’d like to thank our many loyal patrons who embraced the venue from the day the doors opened, who took ownership of it, and who have kept us going for more than 15 years.  I’m sorry that I’m no longer able to provide you with the entertainment and service land pizzas that kept you coming back.”

Best Days Of Our Lives cast (back L-R) Peyton Claasens, Elaine Fourie, Nontu Xulu and Bronwyn Evans; front: JP Moggee and Granville Michaels. This show rocked The Barnyard in 2014.

Best Days Of Our Lives cast (back L-R) Peyton Claasens, Elaine Fourie, Nontu Xulu and Bronwyn Evans; front: JP Moggee and Granville Michaels. This show rocked The Barnyard in 2014.

 90’s Mania was on at The Barnyard earlier this year.

90’s Mania was on at The Barnyard earlier this year.

South African music legend brought the house down when he performed at The Barnyard last year.

South African music legend, Johnny Clegg, brought the house down when he performed at The Barnyard last year.

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