The 350 seater auditorium regularly plays host to music and drama events and is the focus for much of Aberdeen's amateur dramatic activities.
The theatre is on two levels, with an upper and a lower gallery for audiences. There is a small orchestra pit and behind the stage there are dressing and rehearsal rooms for the shows and other projects such as local drama groups.
In addition the theatre has a large participatory arts programme. The centre is home to Castlegate Theatre School (formally established by Annie Inglis) and ACT 2, an award winning youth group for teenagers which focuses on devised theatre. Saturday Drama classes, led by Sheena Blackhall, Marie Skene and Barry Donaldson) run every Saturday for 3 to 11s. In addition the Arts Centre puts on a summer festival known in Aberdeen as 'The Arts Carnival' which is currently in its 29th year
The building also houses an exhibition area which hosts local and visiting art shows. 2007 has seen the start of an artist in residence programme at the arts centre. The first artist was Will Teather.
The centre was the subject of controversy in 1998 when Aberdeen City Council withdrew core funding from the venue. A team of local people, led by Annie Inglis M.B.E, joined forces to take over the lease of the building and established Castlegate Arts Ltd, a volunteer led charity which now runs the centre.