Long Wharf Theatre has named Jacob G. Padrón the theatre's fifth artistic director. The founder of The Sol Project, Padrón, who will begin February 1, 2019, brings a wealth of experience to the New Haven theatre, having worked at The Public Theater, Steppenwolf Theatre, WarnerMedia, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
“Long Wharf Theatre is one of the most important companies in the American theatre. I am overjoyed to join the board, staff, and New Haven community as we embark on new journey and aim to build a boundary breaking future together,” said Padrón in a statement. “The American theatre has a powerful promise to deliver on: it can be a space to hold all our stories. But we, the theatremakers, are the architects of fulfilling that promise and I feel blessed to continue this work at Long Wharf.
“I am committed to supporting stories that are in conversation with the world – stories that are brave, inclusive, intersectional, and reflect the glorious kaleidoscope of our city and our country.”
Long Wharf Managing Director Joshua Borenstein praised the appointment of Padrón as "the perfect choice." "By living here, he will be attuned to the tastes and interests of our community. Also, he is a kind, generous, and thoughtful individual, who will make a terrific partner and leader,” said Borenstein.
Padrón founded The Sol Project in 2016, a national theatre initiative that showcases Latinx playwrights and artists of color through collaborative partnerships with leading theatres. The collective has showcased the work of Hilary Bettis (Alligator), Martín Zimmerman (Seven Spots on the Sun), Luis Alfaro (Oedipus El Rey), and, most recently, Charise Castro Smith (El Huracán).
Padrón was most recently on staff at WarnerMedia (HBO, Warner Bros., and Turner), where he helped lead the company’s philanthropy in theatre and film. He also sits on the board of directors for People’s Theatre Project and is a co-founder of Tilted Field Productions and the Artists’ Anti-Racism Coalition.
Previous posts also include senior line producer (The Public); producer (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); and associate producer (OSF). He is an alumnus of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps and a graduate of Loyola Marymount University (BA) and Yale School of Drama (MFA), where he is on the faculty, teaching artistic producing in the graduate theatre management program.
"I have a life in the theatre because of El Teatro Campensino, a company that taught me that we must dream today, dream tomorrow, and keep using the American theater for our very best days ahead,” said Padrón.