Ian Gabriel’s career began at Johannesburg’s famous multi-racial theatre venue, Dorkay House. It was in this intriguing setting that a fascination with performance drew Ian into film where he worked as a producer before launching himself as a commercials and music video director.
Today Ian Gabriel is internationally recognised as a top performance director with exceptional visual flare across all genres of filmmaking. His approach to film making and story telling has earned him the reputation for creating distinctive compelling narratives, turning many of his commercials into beautifully crafted short films in their own right.
As well as the multiple awards Ian has won for his commercial and music video work, Ian was the recipient of the Human Rights Award at the 57th Locarno International Film Festival in 2004 for his debut feature film FORGIVENESS, a Golden Leopard Nominee and winner of the Locarno Youth Jury Best Film Award. FORGIVENESS received prestigious international Festival and Audience Choice Awards and has featured in programs focusing on conflict, drama and reconciliation at festivals around the world and at programs at Cambridge and Princeton Universities. Ian had the honour of winning the first double award in the music video category at the New York Film & Television Festival for his seminal music videos for punk rock icon Malcom Maclaren.
Ian is equally at home directing off the cuff, slice-of-life observation as he is bringing the human touch to celebrity talent. His work with theatre and jazz greats Miriam Makeba and Abdullah Ibraham, political icons Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu, football star Cristiano Ronaldo, actress Charlize Theron and supermodel Alek Wek amongst others, and most recently world champion long distance runner Haile Gebreselassie, are all testament to Ian’s ability to achieve outstanding performances from actors, characters, musicians, sports heroes and political figures.