Dallas Theater Center's Resident Playwright Jonathan Norton Named Interim Artistic Director

DTC's Board of Directors will launch a national search for a new Enloe/Rose Artistic Director in the fall.

By: Apr. 18, 2024
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Jonathan Norton, who has served as Dallas Theater Center's Resident Playwright since 2019, has been named Interim Artistic Director, following the departure of Sarahbeth Grossman, who served as the theater's Artistic Producer for six years, and the promotion of former Enloe/Rose Artistic Director, Kevin Moriarty, to Executive Director in 2023. Since Moriarty's promotion, Norton, Grossman and Moriarty had shared artistic responsibilities. DTC's Board of Directors will launch a national search for a new Enloe/Rose Artistic Director in the fall, with a new Enloe/Rose Artistic Director to be appointed in late 2025.

“Jonathan has been one of the most impactful artists at DTC through much of the past decade,” said Moriarty. “His work as a writer has received critical acclaim in Dallas and contributed to the impact Dallas artists are making on the national theater community. As DTC's Resident Playwright/Literary Manager, Jonathan has been a leader in our season planning process, working alongside DTC's artistic producer, Sarahbeth Grossman, to identify plays and artists that engage Dallas audiences, and collaborating with DTC's Diane and Hal Brierley Resident Acting Company to produce productions that are entertaining and relevant. I am immensely grateful to Jonathan for stepping forward during this transitional time to provide consistent artistic leadership and to ensure that our artistry remains exemplary.”

“We are fortunate to be able to ensure this smooth transition of artistic leadership,” said DTC Board of Directors Chair, Jennifer Altabef. “For years, we've seen Jonathan's plays captivate DTC's audiences, but his contributions as a member of DTC's artistic staff have been equally important. Jonathan will ensure artistic excellence in our recently announced 2024-25 season and will lead DTC's season planning efforts for our 2025-26 season. With Kevin's continued leadership as Executive Director, DTC is well-poised for future growth and sustained impact.”

“I saw my first play at DTC,” said Norton. “It was Adrian Hall's production of A Christmas Carol. At the time, sixth grade me could not have imagined that decades later DTC would become a cherished artistic home. In my time here I've grown so much as an artist and administrator, and I am eager to pay that forward. This is a critical time for both DTC and the American theater, and I do not take this new responsibility lightly. I am excited to collaborate with so many wonderful folks I deeply admire, to make theater as big and bold as the city of Dallas.”

The final show of DTC's current season, a community-wide Public Works pageant production of Disney's The Little Mermaid, will be performed from July 12-August 4, 2024. Its recently announced 2024-25 season will launch with the Halloween-themed, Dracula: A Comedy of Terrors, on October 11, 2024, followed by productions of Waitress, Shane, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Primary Trust, as well as its annual production of A Christmas Carol from November 29-December 29, 2024. Norton will oversee the 2024-25 season and will immediately begin planning the theater's 2025-26 season.


JONATHAN NORTON is the Interim Artistic Director at Dallas Theater Center where his plays Penny Candy, Cake Ladies and I AM DELIVERED'T have made their world premiere. His work has also been produced or developed by Actors Theatre of Louisville, LaJolla Playhouse, TheatreSquared, Primary Stages, PlayPenn, National New Play Network, National Performance Network, Jacob's Pillow, Pyramid Theatre Company, Black and Latino Playwrights Conference, Bishop Arts Theatre Center, African American Repertory Theater, Soul Rep, Kitchen Dog Theater, Undermain Theatre, Theatre Three, and the South Dallas Cultural Center. Jonathan's play Mississippi Goddamn was a Finalist for the Harold and Mimi Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award and won the 2016 M. Elizabeth Osborn Award given by the American Theatre Critics Association. Other awards include: Artistic Innovations Grant from the Mid-America Art Alliance, South Dallas Cultural Center Diaspora Performing Arts Commission, and the TACA Donna Wilhelm Family New Works Fund. He is also the recipient of the 2019 Eastman Visionary Award given by Jubilee Theatre. His play Penny Candy is published by Deep Vellum Publishing. 

Dallas Theater Center:

One of the leading regional theaters in the country and the recipient of the 2017 Regional Theatre Tony Award, Dallas Theater Center (DTC) performs for an audience of more than 100,000 North Texas residents annually. Founded in 1959, DTC is now a resident company of the AT&T Performing Arts Center and presents its annual season at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre, designed by REX/OMA, Joshua Prince-Ramus and Rem Koolhaas, and at its original home, the Kalita Humphreys Theater, the only freestanding theater designed and built by Frank Lloyd Wright. Under the leadership of Executive Director Kevin Moriarty, Dallas Theater Center produces a year-round subscription series of classics, musicals, and new plays and an annual production of A Christmas Carol. Additionally, the theater produces extensive education programs, including the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award-winning Project Discovery; a partnership with Southern Methodist University's Meadows School of the Arts; and many community collaborations. In 2017, in collaboration with Ignite/Arts Dallas at SMU Meadows School of the Arts and the AT&T Performing Arts Center, DTC launched Public Works Dallas, a groundbreaking community engagement and participatory theater project designed to deliberately blur the line between professional artists and community members, culminating in an annual production featuring more than 200 Dallas citizens performing a large scale theatrical pageant. Throughout its history, Dallas Theater Center has produced many new works, including The Texas Trilogy by Preston Jones in 1978; Robert Penn Warren's All the King's Men, adapted by Adrian Hall, in 1986; and recent premieres of Penny Candy by DTC resident playwright Jonathan Norton; The Supreme Leader by Don Nguyen; Miller, Mississippi by Boo Killebrew; Stagger Lee by Will Power; Giant by Michael John LaChiusa and Sybille Pearson; Hood: The Robin Hood Musical Adventure by Douglas Carter Beane and Lewis Flinn; Bella: An American Tall Tale by Kirsten Childs; Clarkston by Samuel D. Hunter; The Fortress of Solitude by Michael Friedman and Itamar Moses; and Moonshine: That Hee Haw Musical by Robert Horn, Brandy Clark and Shane McAnally. Dallas Theater Center gratefully acknowledges the support of our season sponsors: Texas Instruments and Texas Instruments Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, City of Dallas Office of Arts and Culture, Lexus, TACA, and Texas Commission on the Arts. 


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