Industry Roundup: New Hires at Playwrights Horizons, Second Stage, York Theatre Company, More | Playbill

Industry News Industry Roundup: New Hires at Playwrights Horizons, Second Stage, York Theatre Company, More See who has recently joined the team at theatre institutions in New York and beyond.

Several theatre artists have been selected to take on leadership roles at institutions Off-Broadway, around the nation, and beyond. Read below to see who’s been promoted and what their plans are for the future.

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Natasha Sinha Tess Mayer

Natasha Sinha
Associate Artistic Director, Playwrights Horizons (New York, New York)
In addition to playing a central role in curating Playwrights’ on-stage work alongside Artistic Director Adam Greenfield, Sinha will oversee a broad range of programs including the New Works Lab, Soundstage fiction podcast, resident company program, and the recently announced Lighthouse Project. Currently the director of artistic programs at Signature Theatre, Sinha will assume the position in January 2021. The developer-producer is also on the advisory boards of SPACE on Ryder Farm, Rhinebeck Writers Retreat, and Musical Theatre Factory.

“I’m excited to build at a theater that rings with such powerful history,” said Sinha. “Moving forward, the American theatrical canon should include an ever-widening range of playwrights and storytelling. To enable that, we must reimagine and hone our practices to better support plays by visionary writers from historically oppressed communities.”

Sinha has dedicated her career as an artist and arts administrator to the development of both new plays and musicals by a diversity of writers. Previously, she has worked with LCT3/Lincoln Center Theater and Barrington Stage Company.

Ruben Santiago-Hudson Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Ruben Santiago-Hudson
Artistic Advisor, Manhattan Theatre Club (New York, New York)
Santiago-Hudson continues his endeavors behind-the-scenes by joining MTC to help with artistic planning and programming. “At this critical time in our history, theatre must be a turning point, a bridge to our shared humanity,” said the multi-hyphenate, whose work includes Lackawanna Blues and the upcoming Netflix adaptation of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. “MTC is committed to making sure that every voice is heard, and all stories have value. I share that commitment, that unifying vision, and I look forward to a creative and productive collaboration.” This isn’t the first time Santiago-Hudson has worked with MTC—he directed the Broadway production of August Wilson’s Jitney in 2017, for which he earned a Tony nod.

Elizabeth Van Dyke
Artistic Director, New Federal Theatre (New York, New York)
Performer, director, and producer Van Dyke comes to NFT with decades of experience around the country highlighting works by women of color. The multi-hyphenate now oversees all of the company’s programming and maintains NFT’s mission to integrate artists of color and women into the mainstream of American theatre. Groomed by Producing Director Woody King Jr., Van Dyke has worked in nine productions at NFT in addition to projects at the Ensemble Studio Theatre, the Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts & Humanitie, Connecticut Repertory Theatre, Kuntu Repertory Theatre.

Van Dyke says her short-term creative goals include “insuring NFT is involved in dialogues, initiatives, and coverage, locally, nationally, and that NFT is recognized and valued for its artistry and longevity.”

Gerry McIntyre and Alana Graber

Gerry McIntyre and Alana Graber
Associate Artistic Director and Director of Development, York Theatre Company (New York, New York)
Choreographer McIntyre recently wrapped the Berkshire Theatre Group's production of Godspell, which he adapted to meet COVID-19 health and safety regulations. He made his directing debut at the York with the 2018 Musicals in Mufti presentation of Hallelujah, Baby!. As a performer, he’s been on Broadway and his choreography has been seen around the country, including at Arena Stage, Actors Theatre of Louisville, and Ogunquit Playhouse.

A performing arts administrator and producer, Grabe has worked at CAMI Music, NAMCO (where she worked on Waitress and Chicago on Broadway), and Finger Lakes Musical Theatre Festival, among others.

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Mia Campbell, Dre Taylor Lindsay, Alice Pacthod and John Sorkin
Board of Trustees, Second Stage (New York, New York)
Five patrons of the arts have joined Second Stage’s board of trustees ahead of its planned return to in-person productions in the spring of 2021. Among the new members are Aguirre-Sacasa, a playwright whose credits include Abigail/1702 and Doctor Cerberus in addition to his screen work on Riverdale and The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. The other four come from various industries including education, fashion, business, and law. “They join us at a crucial time for our industry and each will bring unique experience, insight and passion to our company as we prepare to return to our stages, stronger than ever,” said President and Artistic Director Carole Rothman.

Ilana Becker

Ilana Becker
Associate Director, Gingold Theatrical Group (New York, New York)
Becker is a producer and director specializing in new play and musical development. In this role, she’ll oversee new play labs and other programs with Gingold. In addition to her new position, Becker will remain as The Civilians’ research and development group program director. “At such a tumultuous time in our world, our country, and within our field, I feel particularly fortunate to be welcomed into an artistic home that upholds arts as activism,” said Becker. “We have so much ongoing deep and complex work to do in dismantling the systems built to oppress. I join GTG’s thoughtful and committed staff, board, and extended community in continually seeking more equitable practices and inciting honest conversations.

Previously, the producer has worked with All For One Theater, Lincoln Center Education, and Bret Adams Ltd, and spent a year as the Associate Artistic Director and Interim Artistic Director of Sun Valley Center for the Arts’ Company of Fools. She is the creator of Argument Sessions, an ongoing series of immersive variety-theater events that weave SCOTUS argument transcripts and decisions with ensemble-driven, collaboratively developed original material.

Colleen Harris
Managing Director, Theatre Now (New York, New York)
Harris comes to the organization after several years as the theatre manager and later the director of human resources for New World Stages. She has composed musical works for the University of Maryland, the College of Marin, and the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. She currently serves on the faculty of the University of South Carolina in Beaufort.

“I’ve been searching for a theatre organization that promotes the growth of the musical theatre form, and that has the agility and flexibility to engage writers with diverse backgrounds, voices, and styles,” said Harris. “Theatre Now has built a reputation for serving artists, and that foundation will serve us well as we continue to expand our service and our commitment to artists and to the future of musical theatre. I’m excited to be a part of it.”

Gideon Wabvuta c/o The Echo Theater Company

Gideon Wabvuta
Literary Manager, Echo Theater Company (Los Angeles, California)
A playwright and teaching artist currently living in Los Angeles, hailing from Zimbabwe, Wbatuva joins the Echo after earning his MFA in dramatic writing from USC. His work includes Family Riots, Master’s Shoe, and the solo show Mbare Dreams. Wabvuta’s responsibilities include evaluating new scripts, casting weekly in-house readings, working with the artistic and associate artistic directors to determine programming and recommend plays for advancement towards production, and the ongoing organization and archiving of script files. His artistic goal is to create works of art that will reclaim and reframe the African narrative on the world stage.

“Gideon has a voracious appetite for new plays and a desire to contribute to the artistic process from the ground up,” said Artistic Director Chris Fields. “He has a finger on the pulse of the theatre community, both in Los Angeles and nationally, and is committed to promoting diversity, equity and the inclusion of underrepresented voices.”

Rachel Lynett
Executive Director, Page By Page
Founder Jacqueline Goldfinger will pass leadership of Page By Page to playwright-producer Lynett November 1. The monthly subscription service for theatre artists is designed to provide a sense of community with submission opportunities, private artist retreats, virtual happy hours, and a collaborator match program. Goldfinger will remain on the team as a content writer and curator.

Charlotte Lund

Charlotte Lund
Executive Director, Iris Theatre (London, U.K.)
Iris Theatre, the resident theatre company of the Actors’ Church in Covent Garden, has appointed Lund as executive director to work alongside Artistic Director Paul-Ryan Carberry, effective immediately. Lund is an independent creative producer who has worked with Tall Stories, Fuel, Punchdrunk, and Gate Theatre in Notting Hill, as well as producing large scale community projects with The National Trust and with remote communities in Spain. Lund specializes in international touring and artist development, with a mission to develop innovative opportunities and platforms for new work. Making theatre accessible and affordable is also a key component of her work, working with Mousetrap Theatre Projects on their relaxed performances in the West End and producing work with and for neurodiverse artists and audiences.

Maya Choldin
Executive Director, Theatre Calgary (Calgary, Alberta)
Currently the managing director of Pig Iron Theatre Company in Philadelphia, Choldin will officially join Theatre Calgary November 2. Prior to Pig Iron, the artist built a long resume in the arts that includes general manager of the Pennsylvania Ballet, along with roles at George Mason University's Hylton Performing Arts Center, the Kimmel Center, and management of productions and projects at Opera Philadelphia, the Mann Center, and FringeArts.

“Maya comes to Theatre Calgary with an extensive and diversified theatre, and arts background,” said Artistic Director Stafford Arima. “I deeply appreciate her worldliness, which overflows from her being, probably because of the variety of cities she has lived, worked, and thrived in. I'm excited and eager to begin this new partnership with Maya as we enter into unchartered territories of how theatre, gathering spaces, and connectivity will live and breathe within our lives."

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