CINCINNATI (May 20,2019)–Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park Artistic Director Blake Robison announced today the appointment of Karen Zacarías and Nicole A. Watson as new Associate Artists for the theatre. They will join Wendy C. Goldberg on the Playhouse artistic team, working closely with Robison on season planning, new play development and community engagement.
“During my first season, I announced the Associate Artist model to bring a diversity of background, experience and viewpoint to the Playhouse,” says Robison. “I’m excited about the perspectives that Wendy, Karen and Nicole will bring to our artistic team.”
The Playhouse’s Associate Artist program broadens the scope of its artistry by inviting diverse, nationally recognized artists to participate fully in the life of the institution. Previous Associate Artists include Timothy Douglas, KJ Sanchez, Eric Ting and Michael Evan Haney.
“The program has been a success at every level. Our community is much richer for the contributions of these talented artists,” says Robison. “I can’t wait for Cincinnati to get to know Wendy, Nicole and Karen even better throughout the 2019-20 season.”
Goldberg has spent 20 years leading the foremost programs in the development, direction and the production of new works for the American theatre. As Artistic Director of the National Playwrights Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center for 15 seasons, under Goldberg’s tenure, the O’Neill was awarded the 2010 Regional Tony Award. Her directing credits include multiple productions at Goodman Theatre, the Guthrie Theater, Actors Theater of Louisville, Denver Center, Center Stage and Arena Stage among others. During the 2019-20 Playhouse season, Goldberg will direct The Lifespan of a Fact, running in the Marx Theatre Oct. 19 – Nov. 16, 2019. Previously for the Playhouse, she directed the world premiere production of Leveling Up in 2013, Circle Mirror Transformation in 2015, and Doubt and Durango in 2008.
Watson is the Associate Artistic Director at Round House Theatre. For the Playhouse, Watson directed the acclaimed 2017 production of Mr. Joy and recently directed a New York City workshop of The West End by Keith Josef Adkins, which was commissioned by the theatre. Other credits include Sweat by Lynn Nottage (Asolo Repertory Theatre), Dominique Morisseau’s Skeleton Crew (Baltimore Center Stage) and Colman Domingo’s Dot (Playmakers Repertory Company). She has worked with organizations such as the Lark Play Development Center, The Playwrights Center, The Tribeca Film Institute, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The Fire This Time Festival, New Dramatists and the Public Theater.
Zacarías was recently hailed by American Theatre as one of the 10 most produced playwrights in the United States. Her play Native Gardens was commissioned by and had its world premiere at the Playhouse in 2016 and went on to become one of American Theatre’s Top 10 Most Produced Plays of the 2018-19 season. The Playhouse also produced her work The Book Club Play in 2013. Zacarías will be in residence in Cincinnati during the 2019-20 season during the production of her play Destiny of Desire, running in the Marx Theatre Feb. 29 – March 28, 2020. Her award-winning plays also include The Copper Children, Legacy of Light, Mariela in the Desert and The Sins of Sor Juana.
The Playhouse is supported by the generosity of almost 40,000 contributors to the ArtsWave Community campaign. The Ohio Arts Council helps fund the Playhouse with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Playhouse also receives funding from the Shubert Foundation.
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