Berkeley's acclaimed Aurora Theatre Company announced today the appointment of Ryan O'Steen as Technical Director and Production Coordinator of Aurora Theatre Company. O'Steen replaces Chris Killion, Aurora's first Technical Director and Production Coordinator at its current Addison Street space. Killion, an integral part of the company for 11 years, collaborated with the architects and builders on both the original Aurora Addison Street space, as well as the new Dashow Wing, in addition to constructing sets for 55 Aurora Productions. O'Steen joins the company directly from Berkeley Repertory Theatre.
Most recently he was the Associate Technical Director for Berkeley Repertory Theatre, where he has worked for the past 12 seasons engineering and building the sets for productions including: American Idiot, The Composer is Dead, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, The Vibrator Play, The Pillowman, Tragedy: A Tragedy, Passing Strange, Red, Wishful Drinking, and Eurydice, among others. He has also worked on productions at California Shakespeare Theater, Theatre on the Square, Magic Theatre, and on various independent film projects. O'Steen officially joins the Aurora staff at the end of July.
Also joining Aurora Theatre Company as the company's new Literary Manager is Josh Costello; he replaces outgoing Literary Manager/Dramaturg Alicia Coombes, who held the position for the past four seasons. Costello is the founder and first Artistic Director of Impact Theatre, and has served as the Artistic Director of Expanded Programs and Director of Education at Marin Theatre Company for the past five years. Prior to his roles at Marin Theatre Company, Costello served as the Education Director at Marin Shakespeare Company. As a director, recent projects include adaptations of Cory Doctorow's Little Brother for Custom Made Theatre Company and the World Premiere of Reborning by Zayd Dohrn at SF Playhouse, as well as My Children! My Africa!, and the Bay Area Premiere of Lovers & Executioners for Marin Theatre Company. Costello officially joins the Aurora staff at the beginning of August.
"It is with great pleasure that Aurora Theatre Company welcomes our two newest employees, Josh Costello, who will be assisting me in the Artistic Office, and Ryan O'Steen, who will take over as Aurora's Technical Director and Production Coordinator," said Aurora Theatre Company Artistic Director Tom Ross. "Both Josh and Ryan have played important roles in the Bay Area theatrical community for quite some time and we look forward to their fresh visions and expertise as we move forward creating vigorous, challenging, and inspiring theater."
Aurora Theatre Company continues its 20th season with the World Premiere of SALOMANIA, written and directed by Mark Jackson, now through July 29. The company opens its 21st season in August with the coveted Bay Area Premiere of Kristoffer Diaz's Pulitzer-nominated powerslam of a play THE ELABORATE ENTRANCE OF CHAD DEITY, directed by Jon Tracy. Aurora Theatre Company founding Artistic Director Barbara Oliver returns to the company in November to direct WILDER TIMES, a collection of short plays by iconic American playwright and novelist Thornton Wilder, followed by the World Premiere of Anthony Clarvoe's OUR PRACTICAL HEAVEN in January, directed by Allen McKelvey. Award-winning Bay Area auteur Mark Jackson returns to Aurora Theatre Company in April to put his spin on Alistair Beaton's new translation of Max Frisch's West End hit THE ARSONISTS. The season concludes in June with the Bay Area Premiere of Neil LaBute's searing dark comedy THIS IS HOW IT GOES, directed by Aurora Theatre Company Artistic Director Tom Ross.
Nominated for 33 Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards for 2011, Aurora Theatre Company continues to offer challenging, literate, intelligent stage works to the Bay Area, each year increasing its reputation for top-notch theater. Located in the heart of the Downtown Berkeley Arts District, Aurora Theatre Company, declared "one of the best regional theaters around" by 7x7 magazine, has been called "one of the most important regional theaters in the area" and "a must-see midsize company" by the San Francisco Chronicle, while The Wall Street Journal has "nothing but praise for the Aurora." The Contra Costa Times stated "perfection is probably an unattainable ideal in a medium as fluid as live performance, but the Aurora Theatre comes luminously close," while the San Jose Mercury News affirmed "[Aurora Theatre Company] lives up to its reputation as a theater that feeds the mind," and the Oakland Tribune stated "it's all about choices, and if you value good theater, choose the Aurora."