If you were the artistic director of a Tony Award-winning regional theater and had the budget to mount eight full productions this summer, how would you decide which shows to present?
Would you head out to Brooklyn to search for undiscovered plays and musicals perhaps in the sub-basement of a church? Or would you delve into the past for great plays to revive and put a slightly different spin on them?
Which shows would be worthy of your audience’s time, money and intellect—and your theater’s reputation?
Which would help safeguard your theater from the fate of the renowned Intiman Theatre in Seattle, which was crushed by nearly $2.3 million in debt and folded this spring after thirty-nine years?
These are the daunting challenges Jenny Gersten has faced since she became the new artistic director of the Williamstown Theatre Festival a year ago. Gersten is the first woman to hold the position, and the 2011 summer season in Williamstown, Massachusetts, is the first to reflect her decisions.