Manhattan Theatre Club (MTC) has announced that director Kwame Kwei-Armah will be the nonprofit’s new artistic advisor. He will simultaneously continue in his current role as artistic director of the Young Vic Theatre in London.
At MTC, Kwei-Armah succeeds Ruben Santiago-Hudson, who has served in the advising capacity since 2020. Santiago-Hudson will continue to contribute as a part of MTC’s artistic consulting team.
As artistic advisor, Kwei-Armah will work directly with MTC artistic director Lynne Meadow and the company’s artistic staff to offer counsel on programming and future planning. This news comes after Kwei-Armah’s first project with MTC, a transfer of the Young Vic’s production of “The Collaboration,” played the nonprofit’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre in the winter of 2022-2023.
“I’m so excited to continue working with Kwame, having had a joyful experience with him at MTC this past season,” Meadow said in a statement. “Kwame has been a great leader at Baltimore Center Stage and London’s Young Vic in addition to his successful writing and directing career.”
Kwei-Armah and the Young Vic were also represented during the 2022-2023 Broadway season as producers of the “Death of a Salesman” revival starring Wendell Pierce, who is currently Tony-nominated for his performance. Previously, the Young Vic also transferred Matthew López’s drama “The Inheritance,” which took home the 2020 Tony for Best Play.
Kwei-Armah’s experience also includes serving as artistic director for the Festival of Black Arts and Culture in Senegal in 2010 and working with London’s Donmar Warehouse. Kwei-Armah has been a member of the boards of the Theatre Communications Group as well as the U.K.’s National Theatre and Tricycle Theatre. In terms of education, which is also a thrust of MTC’s efforts, Kwei-Armah was chancellor of the University of the Arts London from 2010 to 2015. In 2012, he earned an OBE for Services to Drama.
“My joy at the prospect of dancing with Lynne and the artistic team at MTC can barely be contained,” Kwei-Armah said in a statement. “This is a theater that has much to teach me. And I’m here for it.”
This announcement marks the second recent leadership change at MTC. In early 2023, the nonprofit announced that executive producer Barry Grove would step down at the end of the 2022-2023 season.