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Culture notes: After 33 years, co-founders usher in new leadership at 7 Stages; ART Station theater lineup

By Howard Pousner
hpousner@ajc.com

THEATER
After 33 years, co-founders usher in new leadership at 7 Stages

7 Stages, the longtime Little 5 Points troupe whose stagings frequently show a strong activist streak, has announced a passing of the torch.

Though artistic director Del Hamilton and producing director Faye Allen, who co-founded the company in 1979, will remain active as artistic associates, they have announced a new handpicked artistic and management team, a rare occurrence in Atlanta theater.

Heidi S. Howard, 7 Stages’ education director and production manager, will assume the role of artistic director in January. Michael Haverty, director of the Object Group, will join as associate artistic director. And Mack Headrick, director of finance and operations, will rise to managing director.

Allen said that watching Howard and Headrick develop their talents for more than a decade made it clear that a national search for new leaders was unnecessary.

Howard said she was ready for the challenge of running the Euclid Avenue playhouse, which also is home to a number of smaller performance groups.

“Along with my long-term devil’s advocate Mack Headrick, and now the amazing Michael Haverty, I am so excited to carry this torch forward by collaborating with our new team, guiding our vision for the future and keeping our doors open to projects that challenge and inspire,” she said in a statement.

Haverty, who staged the highly personal and well-received “The Colour of Her Dreams” last year at 7 Stages, will continue as a frequent artistic collaborator at the Center for Puppetry Arts. A recent recipient of a 2012 Princess Grace Award, a fellowship prize that will help underwrite his work at 7 Stages, Haverty also will direct for Dad’s Garage and the Alliance Theatre for the Very Young in 2013.

7 Stages closes its world premiere run of “Dracula: The Rock Opera” Oct. 14. Next on the boards is Teo Castellanos’ “Fat Boy,” a social commentary on poverty, hunger and American consumerism, opening Nov. 8. More on 7 Stages: www.7stages.org.

ART Station announces lineup

Stone Mountain’s ART Station, one of only a handful of professional theaters outside I-285, has released its theater slate for 2012-13.

  • Dec. 6-23: “Christmas Wishes,” a musical about five strangers stranded in a small-town diner on Christmas Eve.
  • Feb. 22-24: An encore presentation of tap-dance improvisers Tip Tap Two.
  • April 18-May 5: “Beer for Breakfast,” a play in which three middle-aged buddies enjoying a guy’s weekend at the lake are challenged when the jilted wife of a fourth pal shows up instead of him.
  • June 6-23: “Sister Robert Anne’s Cabaret Class,” in which a street-smart nun and her accompanist share songs from the “Nunsense” series and no small amount of worldly advice.
  • Aug. 1-18: “Marvelous Wonderettes,” a musical trip back to a 1958 high school prom.

Tickets, $25 adults and $21 seniors/students, are on sale at 770-469-1105, www.artstation.org.

National role for Alliance GM

Alliance Theatre General Manager Max Leventhal has joined the board of Theatre Communications Group. For five decades, TCG, whose ranks include 700 member theaters and affiliate organizations and more than 12,000 individuals nationwide, has had as its mission to “strengthen, nurture and promote the professional not-for-profit American theater.”

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