Jenn Thompson Named Co-Artistic Director of Off-Broadway's TACT

News   Jenn Thompson Named Co-Artistic Director of Off-Broadway's TACT
 
Jenn Thompson, the New York City-based director whose 2008 staging of The Eccentricities of a Nightingale was embraced by critics when it got a popular staging by TACT/The Actors Company Theatre, was named co-artistic director of the Off-Broadway company. She succeeds Simon Jones, who is stepping down after 12 years.

Jenn Thompson
Jenn Thompson Photo by Stephen Kunken

TACT announced on July 30 that Thompson will join founding co-artistic directors Scott Alan Evans and Cynthia Harris in the artistic triumvirate. TACT began as a collective that staged imaginatively rendered concert readings of neglected or rarely staged works of literary value, and has grown over the years to stage two fully produced Off-Broadway productions per season (while also offering a "salon series" of readings).

Thompson, a former Broadway and regional actress who has been a TACT company member since 2002, had most recently been TACT's associate producer (since 2007) and a resident director (The Memorandum, Bedroom Farce, The Late Christopher Bean). She will continue to direct plays for the Equity organization, which has yet to announce its 2011-12 season.

The announcement of her appointment comes between her staging of The Syringa Tree at Portland Stage and a coming revival of Noises Off for Dorset Theatre Festival in Vermont. She directed a reading of the new African-set drama Sia in TACT's new-plays initiative in recent weeks.

Jones, the busy actor now in Off-Broadway's Death Takes a Holiday, has been TACT co-artistic director since 1999 and will remain an involved company member.

Thompson has acted in several TACT productions and also directed salon readings there. Other New York City directing credits include the world premiere of Badge by Mathew Schneck , Term Limit by Viki Boyle, the musical Seeing Stars (NYMF), The Brilliance of Bernstein and Richard Thompson's sold-out Big Doolie (NYC Fringe Festival). As a producing director and founding company member of Connecticut's River Rep Theatre Company, she performed in over 40 plays and musicals and directed productions of The Foreigner, Dinner With Friends, The Heiress and Damn Yankees. She has developed new work at Primary Stages, The York, Abingdon Theatre Company and elsewhere. Thompson's Broadway acting credits include the Tony Award-winning productions of Ah, Wilderness!, The Heiress and the original run of Annie. As a child actress, she starred in the film "Little Darlings" and the TV series "Harper Valley PTA." She is married to actor Stephen Kunken.

For more information about TACT, visit tactnyc.org.

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