Stephenville Theatre Festival Announces New Artistic Director
December 6, 2016 – Stephenville Theatre Festival’s Board of Directors is pleased to announce Heather Braaten as STF’s new Artistic Director.
“Our hiring committee spent a great deal of time interviewing and selecting the perfect candidate,” said Elizabeth Brown, Chair of STF’s Board of Directors. “We are excited to have Heather come on board for this important role. With her wide-ranging theatre experience and outgoing personality, Heather is an excellent fit for STF.”
Heather is an award-winning theatre director who has also worked professionally as a producer, playwright, dramaturge and actor. She has specific expertise in the areas of musical theatre, new play development, devised theatre, and ensemble based physical theatre. Heather also has extensive theatre administration experience in the areas of artistic direction, company management, and tour management.
Heather is absolutely thrilled to be joining STF and looks forward to building upon the strong roots that the festival has in the Canadian theatre community.
“I have a strong belief that the theatre has a very special, and completely unique way of bringing people together,” she said. “The artists, audience, and the community all getting the chance to share a collective moment in time that reflects what it is to be alive. I can’t wait to spend the summer with you!”
Heather is the co-founder and artistic director of the Toronto based theatre ensemble Tool Kit Inc. and is currently developing a new piece of devised musical theatre titled Match Girl: A Folk Rock Musical. She was the interim artistic director for Toronto’s Lower Ossington Theatre where she directed mainstage musicals such as The Last Five Years, American Idiot, Disney’s Aladdin, Spring Awakening, Evita and Next to Normal.
She has worked across Canada and the United States, directing and tour managing over 20 mainstage musicals for young audiences. She was also spent three years as a company member of The National Caravan Stage Company, touring the coastal regions of North America aboard a 90-foot-tall ship that brings original works of Canadian theatre to artistically underserved towns as well as large metropolitan centers.
With her Toronto based company, Redwatch Theatre, she wrote and directed the critically acclaimed play Those Who Wait. This play was later adapted for film, garnering Heather the award of “Best Film by a First-Time Director” and was selected to be screened in the New York Film and Video Festival.
For the Ontario Council for International Co-operation, Heather developed, wrote, and directed a theatre initiative for social change specifically aimed at educating students about the international rights of children. She holds a strong belief that theatre has the power to enlighten as well as to delight an audience.
Heather is currently an artistic associate with Shadowpath Theatre, an award made possible by the Ontario Trillium Foundation in the support of the continued growth of five female artistic leaders.
For more information, contact Don Dunphy at firstname.lastname@example.org. Stephenville Theatre Festival is a not-for-profit charitable organization, registered through the Canada Revenue Agency. Founded in 1979 by Maxim Mazumdar, the Festival has continually enriched the economic and cultural fabric of the Bay St. George area while becoming a major tourism draw.