Playwrights’ Center welcomes Pirronne Yousefzadeh as its interim Associate Artistic Director, effective immediately. Pirronne is a director, writer, and educator whose work has been seen across the country, including at Playwrights’ Center. She was most recently Producing Artistic Director of the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center and has also been part of Geva Theatre Center’s staff. Her work has been seen on the stages of Oregon Shakespeare Festival, 59E59 Theaters, the Kennedy Center, and Actors’ Theatre of Louisville, amongst many others.
“I am so thrilled to welcome my longtime collaborator, colleague, and friend, Pirronne Yousefzadeh, to Playwrights’ Center in this interim role,” shares Playwrights’ Center Producing Artistic Director Jeremy B. Cohen, “She's done essential work to expand the stories that the theater is telling and has been a tremendous advocate for making the field a more accessible and welcoming place to all members of our communities."
Pirronne will take over as the primary producer of the dozens of developmental workshops that Playwrights’ Center provides to playwrights every year, including those featured in the Center’s public season, and will support our Core Writer and The Regulars programs.
Pirronne, for her part, offers, “As a freelance director, I have experienced firsthand the unparalleled support Playwrights' Center provides to artists as they create new plays, and I am absolutely thrilled to join its staff in continuing this vital work. Its culture of abundance, generosity, and profound humanity is both refreshing and essential amidst the many challenging dynamics in our field, and it will be my privilege to work alongside such a passionate and dedicated staff in supporting the visionary voices of the American theater.”
Pirronne and Playwrights’ Center outgoing Associate Artistic Director Hayley Finn, who was recently appointed the new Artistic Director of Theater J, will work together over the next month to ensure a smooth transition.
Pirronne Yousefzadeh (she/her/hers) is a director, writer, and educator. Prior to this appointment, she served as Producing Artistic Director at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center and as the Associate Artistic Director and Director of Engagement at Geva Theatre Center. Her recent directing credits include the world premiere of It's Christmas, Carol! by Mark Bedard, Brent Hinkley, and John Tufts (Oregon Shakespeare Festival), Heartland by Gabriel Jason Dean (59E59), Vietgone by Qui Nguyen (Geva Theatre Center), the world premiere of Kid Prince & Pablo by Brian Quijada (Kennedy Center), and The Wolves by Sarah DeLappe (Actors Theatre of Louisville).
Over the last nineteen years, Pirronne has built a freelance career centering and uplifting the stories of global majority communities. Her development and directing work have taken her to The Public/Joe’s Pub, Playwrights Horizons, New York Theatre Workshop, Ars Nova, Soho Rep, Atlantic Theater Company, Ma-Yi Theater Company, Rising Circle Theater Collective, The Woodshed Collective, Partial Comfort Productions, Noor Theatre, La Mama, New York Musical Theatre Festival, Ensemble Studio Theatre, The Lark Play Development Center, New Dramatists, The Kennedy Center, Williamstown Theatre Festival, American Conservatory Theater, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Cleveland Playhouse, La Jolla Playhouse, Pioneer Theatre Company, Huntington Theatre Company, Two River Theater Company, Playmakers Repertory Company, Milwaukee Rep, Kitchen Theatre Company, Dorset Theatre Festival, InterAct Theatre Company, On the Boards, Perseverance Theatre, and Hangar Theatre, where she was a 2006 Drama League Directing Fellow.
Pirronne is a Usual Suspect at New York Theatre Workshop, New Georges Affiliated Artist, member of Ensemble Studio Theatre, Wingspace, and No More 10 out of 12s, and an alumna of the 2050 Fellowship at NYTW, Sagal Fellowship at Williamstown Theatre Festival, SDC Denham Fellowship, Lincoln Center Directors Lab, Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab, Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Resident Director Program, New Georges Jam, and Drama League Directors Project. In 2020, she was a finalist for SDCF’s Zelda Fichandler Award.
With Rocío Mendez, Sarafina Bush, and Cecilia Durbin, she has co-created Building Better (Play) Worlds, a workshop series on creating anti-racist production processes; the collective has taken these workshops to NYU, Hofstra University, and Fordham University, among others. Pirronne is also a founding member of Maia Directors, a consulting service for artists and organizations who wish to engage with stories from the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia.
Pirronne received her M.F.A. in Directing from Columbia University, where she was a Shubert Presidential Fellow and Matthews Fellowship recipient and studied under the invaluable mentorship of Anne Bogart, Brian Kulick, and Robert Woodruff. She graduated summa cum laude with a degree in Theatre and English Literature from Washington University in St. Louis and completed additional coursework at Shakespeare’s Globe in London and The Public Theater. She is a proud member of Stage Directors and Choreographers Society and is represented by Ben Izzo at A3 Artists Agency. Upcoming projects include the world premiere of The Ants by Ramiz Monsef at Geffen Playhouse.