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Andrew Leynse

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Andrew Leynse was the Artistic Director of Primary Stages for 21 seasons. He produced, managed, and directed in the New York Theater community for more than thirty years. Andrew began his career at Primary Stages in a variety of different roles, including Production Manager and Literary Manager, after graduating from Carnegie Mellon University's directing program. In 1999, he left Primary to work as an Associate Producer to Julian Schlossberg at Castle Hill Productions, where he developed over twenty productions on and off-Broadway. Upon returning to Primary Stages in 2001 as Artistic Director, he oversaw their move to 59E59 Theaters, to The Duke on 42nd Street, to the Cherry Lane Theatre, and most recently to their return to 59E59 Theaters.

During his tenure at Primary Stages, he fostered a home for playwrights, producing new works including Charles Busch's The Tribute Artist and The Confession of Lily Dare; Theresa Rebeck's Downstairs and Poor Behavior; Terrance McNally's The Stendhal Syndrome and Dedication or The Stuff of Dreams; David Ives' All In The Timing and Lives of the Saints; Donald Margulies' The Model Apartment; multiple works by Horton Foote, including Dividing the Estate (two Tony nominations); A.R. Gurney's The Fourth Wall and Black Tie; Michael McKeever's Daniel's Husband; Willy Holtzman's Sabina; Danai Gurira and Nikkole Salter's In the Continuum; In Transit by Kristen Anderson-Lopez, James-Allen Ford, Russ Kaplan, and Sara Wordsworth; Billy Porter's While I Yet Live; Sharon Washington's Feeding the Dragon; and Kate Hamill's Pride and Prejudice and Little Women.


Andrew was also a director and founding member of the Primary Stages Dorothy Strelsin New American Writers Group and helped launch the Primary Stages/Fordham MFA in Playwriting and the Primary Stages Einhorn School of Performing Arts (ESPA). He was the Artistic Director of the Colorado New Play Festival, and a board member of Colorado New Play Festival and A.R.T./New York. Andrew taught for Carnegie Mellon University, The Tepper Semester at Syracuse University, and Primary Stages ESPA.

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Photos: See the Winners & Honorees at the 2023 Off Broadway Alliance Awards

See photos from the 2023 Off Broadway Alliance Awards.

Erin Daley Appointed Interim Artistic Director of Primary Stages

PRIMARY STAGES has appointed Erin Daley as Interim Artistic Director of Primary Stages, following the passing of longtime Artistic Director Andrew Leynse.

FAT HAM, TITANIQUE & More Win 2023 Off Broadway Alliance Awards

The Off Broadway Alliance, an organization of Off-Broadway producers, theaters, general managers, press agents, and marketing professionals, just announced the winners of the 12th Annual Off-Broadway Alliance Awards

FAT HAM, TITANIQUE, MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG & More Nominated for 12th Annual Off Broadway Alliance Awards

The Off Broadway Alliance has announced the nominees for the 12th Annual Off Broadway Alliance Awards, honoring commercial and not-for-profit productions that opened Off Broadway during the 2022-2023 season.

Primary Stages to Celebrate the Life of Artistic Director Andrew Leynse

PRIMARY STAGES has announced that a celebration of life will be held on Monday April 24, 2023, for Artistic Director Andrew Leynse.

Industry Pro Newsletter: Alive Downtown Alliance, Labor Issues on the West End

With more frequency, we are starting to see alliances of theaters come together across different regions to create a stronger entity. And that isn’t a surprising development. Given the rising costs within the industry, collaboration continues to be one of the best ways to keep those costs down.

Primary Stages Artistic Director Andrew Leynse Has Passed Away

PRIMARY STAGES has revealed that Artistic Director Andrew Leynse passed on January 20, 2023, following a sudden illness.

YES, I CAN SAY THAT! Starring Judy Gold & More Added to 59E59 Theaters Winter 2023 Season

59E59 Theaters has announced additional productions for their Winter 2023 Season. The 59E59 Winter 2023 Season will begin with the previously announced productions of The Immortal Jellyfish Girl, presented by Wakka Wakka; followed by two productions as part of Origin’s 1st Irish.

Photos: Inside the Primary Stages 38th Anniversary Gala

Check out photos from the red carpet at the Primary Stages 38th anniversary gala! The gala honored long-time collaborators Charles Busch and Carl Andress (The Confession of Lily Dare; The Tribute Artist) with the 2022 Einhorn Mentorship Award.

Theater Resources Unlimited to Present WHAT PRODUCING COMPANIES NEED NOW Live

Theater Resources Unlimited will return to live monthly panel discussions with a Town Hall, focusing on 'What Producing Companies Need Now'. This highly anticipated event will take place on Tuesday, November 29, 2022 at Polaris North Theatre.

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE to be Presented at Slippery Rock University's Stoner Performing Arts Complex

19th century life has never felt so modern. When one thinks of 'Pride & Prejudice,' the classic novel by Jane Austen first comes to mind. After spending an evening in the Stoner Performing Arts Complex's newly-renovated Black Box Theater, Slippery Rock's retelling of 'Pride & Prejudice' will be sure to replace any outdated memories

Photos: Inside Opening Night of Primary Stages' PEERLESS at 59E59 Theaters

PRIMARY STAGES and 59E59 Theaters, in association with Jamie deRoy, opened peerless last night at 59E59’s Theater A  by 2019/20 Tow Playwright-in-Residence Jiehae Park (Hannah and the Dread Gazebo) and directed by Margot Bordelon (…what the end will be)

Carl Andress and Charles Busch to be Honored at Primary Stages 38th Anniversary Gala

PRIMARY STAGES' 38th Anniversary Gala will honor long-time collaborators Charles Busch and Carl Andress (The Confession of Lily Dare; The Tribute Artist) with the 2022 Einhorn Mentorship Award. The event will take place on Tuesday November 15, 2022, at 6pm at Sony Hall.

Photo Coverage: Inside Opening Night of ON THAT DAY IN AMSTERDAM at 59E59 Theaters

Last night Primary Stages, in association with Ted Snowdon presented On That Day in Amsterdam at 59E59 Theaters. Previews began on July 23 with a limited run through September 4, 2022.  Check out the Opening Night photos here!

Primary Stages Announces 2022 Season Featuring ON THAT DAY IN AMSTERDAM and PEERLESS

PRIMARY STAGES announced today two additional productions as part of their inaugural season as 59E59 Theaters’ Resident Off Broadway Theater Company. As part of the 2022 Season, Primary Stages is presenting two previously announced productions that were postponed due to the pandemic.

Photos: Inside Opening Night of NEW GOLDEN AGE at Primary Stages at 59E59

59E59 Theaters is presenting New Golden Age by Karen Hartman, part of the inaugural VOLT Festival at 59E59. Presented by Primary Stages and directed by Jade King Carroll (Proof of Love), New Golden Age opened May 11 for a run through June 9, 2022.

59E59 Theaters Announces Winter 2022 Season and Return to In-Person Programming

59E59 Theaters has announced their return to in-person programming in January 2022, including their Winter 2022 Season and the launch of the VOLT Festival in Spring 2022.

Primary Stages Announces 37th Annual Gala Honoring Sharon Washington

PRIMARY STAGES announced today that the 37th Annual Gala will honor Sharon Washington (Feeding the Dragon, While I Yet Live, String of Pearls) with the 2021 Einhorn Mentorship Award. Hosted by Judy Gold (25 Questions for a Jewish Mother, The Judy Show), the event will take place in person on Wednesday November 10, 2021, at 6:00pm at Sony Hall.

Primary Stages Announces Plans for 2022 In-Person Return, Plus New Artistic Development Programs

PRIMARY STAGES has announced new artistic development programs, as well as their path towards reopening to in-person theater in Spring 2022.

Primary Stages Announces Virtual Fall Season

PRIMARY STAGES has announced its Fall 2020 Virtual Season. The Foundation Series will revisit the work of some of Primary Stages' family of artists, including The Tribute Artist by Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Award winner Charles Busch and The Night Watcher by Obie Award winner and Tony Award nominee Charlayne Woodard.

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