Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation Announces Mentor and Host Theater for 2022 Lloyd Richards New Futures Residency Program

SDCF announces the host theater for its 2022 Lloyd Richards New Futures residency program: Actors Theater of Louisville in Louisville, KY. Applications are now being accepted for an Artist-in-Residence, who will be mentored by Actors Theater of Louisville Executive Artistic Director Robert Barry Fleming for one year while undertaking his own artistic endeavors at the host theater.

The Lloyd Richards New Futures Residency is a year-long residency for mid-career BIPOC directors and choreographers interested in artistic leadership. Named in honor of a legendary leader in American theater, the residency’s goal is to forge new alliances between artists seeking institutional leadership and forward-thinking artistic directors. The artist-in-residence and the DA will collaborate to discover new solutions in pursuit of the theater’s values ​​and overall mission in a rapidly changing field.

Each artist-in-residence in the program, now in its second year, receives a $40,000 grant as well as access to health insurance and additional housing and travel assistance. Additionally, the resident artist is guaranteed to direct or choreograph a production at the host theater within three years of the residency. SDCF is now accepting applications from mid-career BIPOC directors and choreographers interested in pursuing institutional leadership. Deadline is Wednesday, July 6e at 11:59 p.m. ET. The residency will begin in the fall of 2022.

For a full program description, artist-in-residence eligibility criteria, and to apply, please visit

The host theater selection committee included Anne Kauffman (committee chair), Justin Emeka, Kent Gash and Chay Yew. Scott Richards served as an advisor.

The Actors Theater of Louisville Artist-in-Residence (RA) will be a key collaborator, part of the artistic direction team, and will have access to all aspects of the organization. Specific RA projects will be matched to their strengths and interests based on which projects are lined up for the coming year and new opportunities that arise at various stages of development. The theater’s goal is to provide programming that is relevant to the community and in pursuit of the organization’s mission and values. Actors Theater is looking for a director or choreographer who has a multidisciplinary background and who is interested in being part of an organization at a time of transition and transformation. The RA may also be interested in transmedia, which The Actors Theater of Louisville defines as storytelling across multiple media creating a cohesive experience. Recent projects range from the world premiere of Still Ready to resilience workshops for healthcare workers in partnership with The Clinic, Ali Summit in virtual reality and the award-winning animated short, The Breasts of Tiresias. .

Said Fleming, Actors Theatre’s Executive Artistic Director, “The incredible synergy and alignment of being selected as the host theater for the SDCF Lloyd Richards New Futures Residency at this defining moment in the evolution of the Actors Theater from Louisville are not lost on us. Our commitment to the professional development of aspiring artists and leaders is unwavering and this forward-thinking and visionary initiative is an important field-wide inflection point, signaling a very bright future for our discipline. , indeed. We couldn’t be more honoured.

Lloyd Richards’ pioneering career began as an actor in 1940s New York. In 1956, Sidney Poitier, a friend and former student, secured Richards an interview with producers to direct Lorraine Hansberry’s new play, A Raisin in the Sun. Richards’ work on the production earned him his first of five Tony nominations for Best Direction of a Play; he won in 1987 for his work on August Wilson’s Fences. Richards led the National Playwrights Conference (NPC) at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center for more than 30 years, developing the work of hundreds of playwrights. From 1979 to 1991 he was Artistic Director of Yale Repertory Theater and Dean of the Yale School of Drama. A founding member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC), he was its president from 1970 to 1980. He received the National Medal of Arts in 1993.

The 2022 Lloyd Richards New Futures Residency is made possible through support from the Miranda Family Fund, Judi & Douglas Krupp, Concord Theatricals, Allison Thomas, as well as support from the SDCF Fellowship Funds named for Shepard and Mildred Traube and Sir John Gielgud, and many generous people.

For a full description of the program, eligibility criteria for resident artists and to apply, please visit

Lloyd Richards (1919-2006) was born in Toronto and grew up in Detroit. He entered Wayne University (now Wayne State) intending to become a lawyer, but due to a love of acting he became a talk major. He joined the Army Air Corps in 1944 during World War II and earned his pilot’s wings at Tuskegee. After the war, he performed in two semi-professional theaters in Detroit that he helped establish, worked as a radio disc jockey, and was employed as a social worker for the Welfare Department. He moved to New York in 1947 and worked as an actor on radio, Off-Broadway and eventually Broadway. In 1956, his

friend and former student Sidney Poitier hired him to direct Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun. It enjoyed artistic and commercial success on Broadway, and Richards became the first black director nominated for the Tony Award for Best Direction.

He was a founding member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC) in 1959, and its president from 1970 to 1980. From 1968 to 1999 he led the National Playwrights Conference (NPC) at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, where he developed the work of John Guare, Derek Wolcott, Wole Soyinka, Israel Horovitz, Wendy Wasserstein, Christopher Durang, David Henry Hwang, John Patrick Shanley, Lee Blessing, Doug Wright and Adam Rapp, among hundreds of others. In 1979 he was named Dean of the Yale School of Drama and Artistic Director of the Yale Repertory Theater, where notable productions include three premieres by Athol Fugard. Richards then directed six new Wilson plays while creating a vertically integrated development process that took these plays from the O’Neill to Yale through a tour of regional theaters, culminating in commercial Broadway premiere productions. This process proved so successful that during Broadway’s 1987–88 season, four plays he directed or produced were simulcast. Richards won the Tony Award for Best Direction for August Wilson’s Fences in 1987 and the National Medal of Arts in 1993. He died June 29, 2006, his 87e birthday.

Actors Theater of Louisville unlocks human potential, builds community, and enriches quality of life by engaging people in theater that reflects the wonder and complexity of our times. Actors Theater of Louisville is an arts and culture organization as a social enterprise using a transmedia cross-platform approach. This strategically centers experiences that reflect a civic commitment to social good and the health and well-being of the many constituents we serve. Pursuing a synthesis of art and service, our interdisciplinary lab intersects art, emerging technology and social transformation for a (r)evolution of storytelling.

Founded in 1965, the Directors and Choreographers Foundation (SDCF) celebrates, develops and supports professional directors and choreographers at every stage of their career. We strive to build a theater community that reflects our country’s cultural, racial and gender diversity by creating opportunities for artists of all backgrounds to express themselves fully and authentically in their work as creative leaders in theatre.

SDCF is committed to fostering an environment that is inclusive and free from discrimination based on ethnicity, religion, disability, age, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression in its programs or activities.

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