Theater News

New York Stage and Film's Johanna Pfaelzer Named Berkeley Rep Artistic Director

Notable works from ”Hamilton” to ”The Humans” trace their developmental roots to Pfaelzer’s tenure at NYSAF.

Johanna Pfaelzer will take over as Artistic Director of Berkeley Repertory Theatre.
Johanna Pfaelzer will take over as artistic director of Berkeley Repertory Theatre.
(photo provided by Berkeley Repertory Theatre)

New York Stage and Film announced today that artistic director Johanna Pfaelzer will step down to become the new artistic director of Berkeley Repertory Theatre beginning September 1, 2019. Currently Berkeley Rep artistic director Tony Taccone will continue in his position through the 2018-19 season, and Pfaelzer will conclude her tenure with New York Stage and Film at the end of the company's 2019 Powerhouse Summer Season.

Pfaelzer will remain on the board of directors of New York Stage and Film, and will work closely with the founders and the board to identify her successor. New York Stage and Film will initiate a nationwide search for its next artistic director later this fall.

"I have been unbelievably lucky to have had a 20-year relationship to New York Stage and Film," said Pfaelzer in a statement. "More than three decades ago, Mark Linn-Baker, Max Mayer, and Leslie Urdang had the extraordinary vision to recognize a real and specific need in the American theater, and to meet that need in the creation of New York Stage and Film, a place where artists could have a protected, rigorous, vibrant environment in which to develop their work."

Of her upcoming appointment, Pfaelzer said, "I am honored beyond measure to serve as the next artistic director of Berkeley Rep. It is a company I have admired my whole life, and to have the opportunity to return home to the Bay Area as its leader is a dream. Tony Taccone and Susie Medak have built an organization that is a place of boundless creative vision, great intellectual rigor, and a deep sense of community. I can't wait to get to work with this extraordinary board and staff to continue to bring world-class work from the widest possible range of artists to Berkeley Rep's stages."

New York Stage and Film is a not-for-profit company dedicated to both emerging and established artists in the development of new works for theater and film. The signature programs include Powerhouse Theater Season, New York City Programming, Powerhouse Training Program, Filmmakers' Workshop, Awards, Fellowships, and Residencies. Dozens of notable works trace their developmental roots to NYSAF, including the 2016 Tony Award winners for Best Musical (Hamilton) and Best Play (The Humans), as well as the Tony Award-winning plays Side Man and Doubt, the Broadway musicals American Idiot and Bright Star, and more.

Berkeley Repertory Theatre is a nonprofit that has provided a home for emerging and established artists since 1968. Over 5.5 million people have enjoyed nearly 500 shows at Berkeley Rep, which have gone on to win five Tony Awards, seven Obie Awards, nine Drama Desk Awards, one Grammy Award, and many other honors. Berkeley Rep received the Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre in 1997.