Theatre Orangeville Artistic Director David Nairn Set to Retire

Nairn has led the company for 25 years.

By: Jun. 03, 2024
Theatre Orangeville Artistic Director David Nairn Set to Retire
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Theatre Orangeville Artistic Director, David Nairn, will be stepping down as AD at the conclusion of the upcoming 2024-25 season.

"David has led the company with unwavering commitment for the past 25 years," said Board President Randall Ugolini. "Under David's visionary leadership, Theatre Orangeville has evolved from a small summer theatre into a flourishing multi-dimensional professional regional theatre that has become the cornerstone of the local arts and culture scene. Although he would never admit it, he's been pivotal in putting Theatre Orangeville on the map and keeping us front and centre in the community."

As David shared with the Board of Directors:

"As we are stepping into the sunshine of a new tomorrow, one dedicated to the re-enchantment of our community, our patrons, our volunteers, our artists and, perhaps most importantly, ourselves, I know in my heart that it's time for me to "move on".

My decision to "move on" has not been an easy one to make, but I believe with all my heart and soul, that we have the perfect dream team in place for moving forward successfully ... an incredible staff that is passionately dedicated, fiercely loyal, responsible and resourceful beyond measure as well as being extremely creative ... and a Board of Directors who equally share the talents, passion, dedication and commitment to remain true to our vision and mandate.

Together as a team, we have collectively maneuvered through challenging times that abounded with many "creative opportunities", and I know that this theatre company will continue to thrive, flourish and grow under new artistic leadership."

Aside from the more than 90 plays and musicals he's directed for Theatre Orangeville over the years, throughout David's tenure the theatre has spearheaded numerous ground-breaking initiatives that have become integral to Theatre Orangeville's identity and our community at large. With the support of generous community partners, David played a central role in establishing the acclaimed New Play Development Fund that nurtures emerging playwrights and provides a platform for original Canadian works that resonate with contemporary audiences. In 2004, David spearheaded one of our most beloved programs, Creative Partners On Stage (C.P.O.S.) a magical partnership with Community Living Dufferin that spreads the joy of theatre with unique theatrical programming that celebrates the unique ability of all participants. Other community partnerships forged during David's tenure include Dufferin Child & Family Services and our wonderful Theatre Orangeville Exceptional Players (T.O.E.P.) program, Credit Valley Conservation and our productions on the Island Lake stage.

Under David's stewardship, the theatre also introduced Theatre Orangeville's Summer Arts Fest that includes North(519), an annual celebration of the best of the Toronto Fringe Festival that attracts visitors from across the region and beyond. Most recently, David oversaw the creation of StageTOScreen, a creative online streaming solution whereby Theatre Orangeville productions are available on demand and live-streamed; not even the global pandemic could stop Theatre Orangeville from spreading the wonder of theatre.

In recent years, his dedication to diversity and inclusion has brought numerous entertaining and educational works to the Theatre Orangeville stage ensuring that our productions reflect the changing demographics and rich tapestry of our community.

When David steps down from his Artistic Director role, he will not be stepping away from our theatre entirely. Moving forward, David has agreed to remain actively engaged in a part-time role as Artistic Director Emeritus, therby allowing him the opportunity to serve as a mentor to the new Artistic Director while still advocating for the arts within the broader community. He will be collaborating on special projects with Theatre Orangeville, thus ensuring that his wealth of knowledge and experience continues to benefit the organization.

Theatre Orangeville will begin the search, this summer, for a new Artistic Director who can build on David's remarkable legacy and lead us into our exciting future. We are immensely grateful for David's extraordinary contribution and steadfast dedication to Theatre Orangeville throughout his successful and impactful 25+ year tenure as our Artistic Director.



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