Paulus will succeed Robert Woodruff, who was artistic director from 2002-2007. She will begin her work in the fall, planning the 2009-2010 season.
Paulus' relationship with the acclaimed company began over two decades ago when she was a Harvard undergraduate. In a statement Paulus said, "I feel my perspective on theatre was shaped by my years attending the A.R.T. . . . I am deeply honored to be appointed artistic director of the A.R.T. When I was a student at Harvard, there was no question the A.R.T. was the most exciting and vibrant theatre in America. I am thrilled to build on that legacy, and lead the A.R.T. into the future, creating a home for the next generation of outstanding theatre artists who will redefine and revitalize the meaning of theatre for our society and for the community. I am very impressed with President Faust's commitment to the arts, and I plan to work closely with Harvard to examine how the A.R.T. can be more fully integrated into the life of the university."
Harvard President Drew Faust added, "The A.R.T. is an organization that is uniquely positioned to strengthen the place and the role of the arts at Harvard University and in the broader Cambridge and Boston communities. I am very pleased to welcome Diane Paulus back to Harvard at this exciting point in time when we are actively studying ways in which to integrate arts more closely into the life and the curriculum of the University. She is an accomplished director with an interest in and a talent for engaging young people. Diane will be an important part of our efforts to build new partnerships between the A.R.T. and the university community at large – faculty, students and the administration. I look forward to Diane’s first season with great anticipation."
And, A.R.T. executive director Robert J. Orchard said, "I am both excited and proud to have an artist we helped nurture take the organization into a dynamic new era. Please join me in welcoming Diane into our growing family, and supporting her as she leads us down new artistic paths and reaffirms our dedication to creating the most compelling, thought-provoking theatre in the country."
Paulus is a critically acclaimed director, who is equally at home with plays, musical theatre and opera. Her body of work includes The Donkey Show, which ran for six years Off-Broadway and toured internationally; Another Country by James Baldwin at Riverside Church; the Obie Award-winning Eli's Coming, featuring the music and lyrics of Laura Nyro; the 40th anniversary concert production of Hair in Central Park; and Don Giovanni, The Turn of the Screw, Le Nozze di Figaro and Così fan tutte, all for the Chicago Opera Theater. She and her husband, writer and producer Randy Weiner, have two small children. *
Robert Brustein was the founding director of The American Repertory Theatre, which is located at the Loeb Drama Center in Harvard Square at 64 Brattle Street, Cambridge, MA. For more information visit www.amrep.org.