Woodruff Leaving Am. Repertory Theatre

The Associated Press
Thursday, December 28, 2006; 9:22 PM

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Robert Woodruff will step down as artistic director of the American Repertory Theater and return to his native New York where he will continue to direct and teach, the theater announced Thursday.

Woodruff, who joined the Harvard University-affiliated theater in 2001, will leave after his contract ends in 2007. He programmed five seasons "of some of the most distinguished productions" in the theater's 26-year history, executive director Robert Orchard said in a statement.

Woodruff is only the second resident artistic director for the theater that has won the Pulitzer, Tony Award and Jujamcyn awards since 1980.

"I am proud of the work we did and of the art we created together," Woodruff said. "I want to thank everyone involved in both Cambridge and in the distant corners of the world for the opportunity to make such exciting and innovative theater."

Harvard Provost Steven Hyman intends to convene a search committee in January to find Woodruff's successor, the theater said.

Woodruff is a founder of the Eureka Theater and the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, both in San Francisco, and has worked at other major theaters around the country including the Goodman Theater, Lincoln Center and the Mark Taper Forum.

© 2006 The Associated Press