Roy Arauz Named New Artistic Director of Seattle Musical Theatre
Seattle Musical Theatre has announced the appointment of Artistic Director Roy Arauz. A Seattle theatre veteran, Arauz brings seven years of managing theatre companies and producing musicals and plays, as well as many years of dance, choreography, and stage management experience. "There is so much potential at SMT and I am excited to tap into it," says Arauz. "There is a great group of people at the helm, all of whom want to see the company succeed. It's electrifying."
Born in Los Angeles of Costa Rican descent, Arauz was raised in Costa Rica where he trained as a modern dancer in Limón technique. Upon his return to the U.S., his dance training led to acting, choreography, stage management, and ultimately to directing and producing. He choreographed Female Hitchhikers for Consenting Adults Theatre Company in Washington DC, earning a Helen Hayes Award nomination.
"My goal is to present a consistent level of quality," says Arauz. "I am committed to strengthening SMT's ties with the Seattle theatre community and creating programs where we foster and develop not only the skills of theatre artists, but the continued love of theatre from our patrons, regular and new."
In the last twelve years, he has worked in various capacities at ArtsWest, Balagan Theatre, SecondStory Repertory, The Driftwood Players, Snoqualmie Falls Forest Theatre, Microsoft Theatre Troupe, Redwood Theatre, and Studio East. This August he will make his directorial debut at Book-It Theatre with the bilingual play La Mariposa, based on Francisco Jiménez's book, adapted by Rose Cano. His musical directing credits include productions of Annie, Chess, and The Music Man, and he has choreographed productions of South Pacific, The Fantasticks, The Wizard of Oz, Fiddler on the Roof, A Little Night Music, and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.
From 2007-2009, Arauz was Vice President of Redwood Theatre in Redmond, during which time the theatre earned a Redmond Arts Award for Service to the Community. In 2009, he founded Arouet, inspired by the work of Voltaire. He has directed numerous plays at Arouet, including the critically acclaimed production The Temperamentals, called "superb" and "a solid production of beautiful work" by BroadwayWorld.com and "engaging" and "insightful" by The Seattle Times.
Arauz's passion for musical theatre drives his commitment to cement Seattle Musical Theatre as a respected and permanent fixture in Seattle's theatre landscape. "SMT provides a unique opportunity for patrons and artists to experience and perform musicals in a medium-size house. Admission prices remain affordable, and we strive to be the training ground for actors and crew as they move on to professional productions."
The mission of Seattle Musical Theatre is to engage and entertain our community by producing new and traditional musicals. This theater nurtures local talent by providing training and artistic development opportunities for children, youth, and adults form all walks of life. SMT's vision is to enrich the entertainment and educational value of live theater in the Northwest region; provide a premiere environment for nurturing artistic and technical talent; and develop the Magnuson Park theater facility as a key cultural resource for civic, arts, and other community organizations. SMT at all times will strive to demonstrate and inspire the following values among out Board of Directors, staff, artists, volunteers, patrons, and donors.
Seattle Musical Theatre kicks off its 37th season with MAN OF LA MANCHA directed by Rick Wright September 9-28 at Magnuson Park. Tickets (starting at $20) are available through brownpapertickets.com; www.seattlemusicaltheatre.org; or by calling 1-800-838-3006.