New York City Center has announced that Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson composer Michael Friedman will be the next artistic director of Encores! Off-Center, the summer musical theatre series that stages concert presentations of landmark Off-Broadway musicals. The Obie Award winner will succeed founding artistic director Jeanine Tesori beginning with the 2017 season.
“Being the artistic director for Encores! Off-Center has taught me the importance of advocating for other artists, taking a stand for their work as I do for my own,” said Tesori in a statement. “I can't wait to see where the bold and innovative Michael Friedman will take us next, and I'm thrilled to see another composer take the lead." The Tony-winning Fun Home composer will continue her relationship with New York City Center as an artistic advisor.
“Encores! Off-Center has quickly become one of the irreplaceable institutions in New York—which is daunting—but I’m eager to build on the work that Jeanine and Jack (Viertel, Encores! artistic director) have done to broaden our understanding of what musical theatre is in America,“ said Friedman. “I’m looking forward to re-imagining these risky, unexpected, and sometimes forgotten works which the audience may think they know, but will now see in perhaps a different light.”
Friedman’s credits also include Unknown Soldier, Pretty Filthy, The Fortress of Solitude and Love’s Labour’s Lost.