HARTFORD, CONN.: Hartford Stage has announced that artistic director Darko Tresnjak will step down at the conclusion of the 2018-19 season. A national search will be conducted to find a replacement for Tresnjak, who has led the theatre since 2011.
“Darko leaves Hartford Stage with a lasting legacy,” said board president Sue Ann Collins in a statement. “As he promised when he arrived, under his direction we laughed, we had our hearts broken, we were reminded of the power of love, we empathized, we took a few walks on the wild side and we saw great shows. His work at Hartford Stage will live on, as his productions of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and Anastasia become worldwide successes. We are forever thankful for the great artistic gifts he brought to the stage and will continue to follow his awe-inspiring career.”
Tresnjak’s directing credits at Hartford Stage also include the world premieres of Breath and Imagination by Daniel Beaty and Rear Window, adapted by Keith Reddin and starring Kevin Bacon; revivals of Bell, Book and Candle, La Dispute, Private Lives, Kiss Me, Kate, and Heartbreak House; and seven productions of Shakespeare plays. Also under his leadership, Hartford Stage produced Quiara Alegría Hudes’ Water by the Spoonful, Reverberation by Matthew Lopez, Big Dance Theater’s Man in a Case with Mikhail Baryshnikov, and the upcoming The Age of Innocence, adapted by Douglas McGrath. Tresnjak also designed the sets for his productions of Macbeth, Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, and A Comedy of Errors. Under his leadership, the company’s subscriber base increased from 6,000 to 8,000, box office records have been broken, and the education programs have expanded to reach more than 21,000 students.
Prior to his time at Hartford Stage, Tresnjak served as the artistic director of the Old Globe in San Diego, Calif., from 2004 to 2009. Tresjnak won a Tony Award for directing A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, which also took home the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2014. For his work at Hartford Stage, he has received four Connecticut Critics Circle Awards for both direction and set design. He was educated at Edmund Burke School, Swarthmore College, and Columbia University.
Tresnjak will make his Metropolitan Opera directorial debut in September with Saint-Saëns’ Samson et Dalila, starring Elīna Garanča and Roberto Alagna. His production of Anastasia, currently on Broadway, will open in Spain, Germany, and begin a national tour this year.
“I want to thank our staff, our board, our audiences, and all the wonderful artists whose work has graced our stage over the past seven seasons,” said Tresjnak in a statement. “And I look forward to our spectacular 2018-19 season, which will be announced shortly. Serving as the artistic director of Hartford Stage has been the greatest honor and privilege of my career. I look forward to welcoming the next artistic director who—working alongside our indomitable managing director, Mike Stotts—will lead this great American theatre company.”