Kwame Kwei-Armah has been appointed Artistic Director of London’s Young Vic Theatre.
The Award-winning director and playwright is currently Artistic Director of Baltimore Centre Stage where he has been based for the last five years. In his time at Baltimore Centre Stage he has directed numerous productions, as well as directing at New York’s Public Theater, Signature Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Birmingham Repertory Theatre.
Whilst not alway smooth sailing (his first two producitons were poorly received), Kwame’s tenure at Baltimore has been a roaring success with increased attendance and generally rave reviews.
His production of One Night in Miami at the Donmar Warehouse in 2016 was nominated for an Olivier Award for Best New Play.
His works as playwright include One Love (Birmingham Rep), Marley, Beneatha’s Place (Baltimore Center Stage), Elmina’s Kitchen, Fix Up, Statement of Regret (National Theatre) and Let There Be Love and Seize the Day (Tricycle Theatre).
Kwame Kwei-Armah says: “To walk into the Young Vic is to come face to face with everything I love about theatre, so I am beyond humbled, if not a little scared. But to lead this magnificent theatre at this time in our nation’s history, after such a visionary as David, excites me beyond words. I can’t wait to get started.”
Patrick McKenna, Chair of the Board, says: “After meeting Kwame the panel was unanimous in its decision to appoint him as the next leader for this remarkable institution. Kwame’s wealth of experience directing, writing and working with the local community in Baltimore and beyond will translate beautifully to his new role leading the work on the Young Vic’s three stages as well as its pioneering outreach and education work in London.”
David Lan, outgoing Artistic Director, says: “The choice the panel has made is inspired. I welcome it wholeheartedly and will do whatever I can to support Kwame in the early days as he finds his own distinctive way to keep the Young Vic one of the great producing theatres of this country and the world.”
Kwame suceeds Dan Lan who still be stepping down in 2018 after 18 years in the role. He will announce his first season in 2018