CHICAGO: Raven Theatre has named Cody Estle to be its new artistic director. Estle, who served as the company’s associate artistic director for three years, succeeds co-artistic directors Michael Menendian and JoAnn Montemurro, who led the theatre since its inception in 1983.
“Folllowing a nationwide search and interview process, we are very excited to announce the selection of Cody Estle as the new artistic director of Raven Theatre,” said board president Walter Pophin in a statement. “Cody has faithfully served the theatre over the past nine years in a variety of ways, most recently since October 2014 as the theatre’s associate artistic director. He brings superb artistic skills, a wealth of relationships within the Chicago theatre community, an intimate knowledge of the theatre’s long history, as well as an unmatched enthusiasm for theatre’s ability to tell the important stories of our times and of our communities. The board of directors and the staff of the theatre look forward to working with Cody in his new role.”
Estle has directed numerous shows at Raven Theatre, including Dating Walter Dante, Boy Gets Girl, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Good Boys and True, Vieux Carré, Dividing the Estate, A Loss of Roses, and The Assembled Parties. He will direct the company’s upcoming production of The Gentleman Caller. He has directed throughout Chicago at Northlight Theatre, First Floor Theatre, Redtwist Theatre, the Artistic Home, Haven Theatre, Mary-Arrchie Theatre, and Shattered Globe Theatre. Estle served as the artistic assistant at Northlight Theatre and as a directing associate at Goodspeed Musicals. He has taught on the faculty of Cherubs at Northwestern University and have served as an assistant director at Steppenwolf Theatre, Northlight Theatre, Writers Theatre, Court Theatre, and Marriott Theatre. He holds a B.A. in directing from Columbia College Chicago.
“I’m thrilled to take on this new leadership role at Raven Theatre,” said Estle in a statement. “I look forward to working with the board and staff to bring artistically vital programming to Edgewater. Together we will foster dialogue with our collaborators and audience and will build and expand the Raven Theatre community.”