WASHINGTON, D.C.: Arena Stage has announced that leader and artist Teresa Sapien will be the theatre’s new associate artistic director. Sapien originally joined the company in 2019 and most recently served as casting director/line producer.
Said artistic director Molly Smith in a statement, “Teresa demonstrated powerful leadership during the pandemic, making sure the artistic department ran smoothly as it changed shape. She is a careful and thoughtful colleague with incredible organizational skills, a strong connection with artists, and an ability to talk to anyone as a terrific problem solver and innovator. She immerses herself in the community and is committed to making every theater space a welcoming and inclusive place. She is a perfect fit.”
As associate artistic director, Sapien will report directly to Smith and is responsible for leading the efforts of Arena Stage’s artistic development department, which includes dramaturgy, casting, and audience enrichment activities, as well as implementing the artistic vision of the theatre by assisting in the development of season planning, strategy, and programming. Sapien has made her mark on the theatre community, especially at San Diego’s La Jolla Playhouse, where she served for seven seasons, most recently as associate producer.
“I’m thrilled to be taking on this new role as associate artistic director at Arena Stage,” said Sapien in a statement. “I would not have landed here without learning from and working with so many innovative artists through the years. I’m eager to bring that same innovation and generosity to this new role, helping lead Arena with compassion and hold the doors open for future generations of theatre artists.”
At La Jolla Playhouse, Sapien helped guide more than 50 productions on the mainstage and out in the San Diego community, including new plays by Martyna Majok, Will Power, and Hansol Jung. She was the curator and producer of the 2019 Without Walls Festival of site-based and immersive theatre, and co-producer of the annual DNA New Work Series. She is a reader for the Playwrights Realm, Playwrights’ Center Minneapolis, Native Voices at the Autry and a proud contributor to the Kilroys’ List. Sapien is a graduate of the University of Evansville’s theatre department.
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