Masterson will depart in fall 2011. A search committee is being formed to find Masterson's successor.
Masterson said in a statement, "Actors Theatre has been my artistic home for the last 11 seasons. I have been able to explore new artistic possibilities and challenge the audiences, both locally and nationally. I have had the privilege of programming the most well-respected new play festival in the world with the Humana Festival of New American Plays. Becoming the artistic director at South Coast Repertory will present a whole new range of challenges for me, and I am very excited to join another institution as well respected as Actors Theatre."
During Masterson's time with ATL, he has directed such plays as The Kite Runner, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Shipwrecked! An Entertainment, a bluegrass-themed As You Like It, The Tempest, which featured members of the Rachels, and an array of world premieres in the Humana Festival of New American Plays including: Ground, Wild Blessings: A Celebration of Wendell Berry (co-adapted with Adrien-Alice Hansel), The Unseen, Natural Selection, The Shaker Chair, After Ashley, Tallgrass Gothic, The Second Death of Priscilla, Limonade Tous les Jours and Wonderful World.
Programming for Actors Theatre's 2011-12 season has been completed and the full lineup will be announced in March 2011. Masterson will begin working part-time at South Coast Repertory following the Humana Festival of New American Plays in March-April, with a full transition expected to be complete by Sept. 1.
In 11 years of leadership at Actors Theatre, Masterson "has produced more than 200 plays in Louisville, expanded and deepened arts education programs and spearheaded community-based projects, including commissions and site-specific productions of regional stories and artists," according to ATL. Of the more than 100 plays premiered during his tenure, 86 percent have moved on to subsequent productions around the country. Masterson earned his MFA from University of Pittsburgh and a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University. He subsequently taught at both universities. He currently serves on the executive committee of Theatre Communications Group. He served as producing director of City Theatre in Pittsburgh for 20 years. He was founder and chairman of Greater Pittsburgh Arts Alliance and has served as a panel member for Pennsylvania Council of the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts and other national foundations. Masterson won the Lifetime Achievement Award from Pittsburgh New Works Festival. He is married to Patricia Melvin, and they have two daughters-Laura and Alex.
For more about ATL, visit www.actorstheatre.org.