Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts, is pleased to announce the appointment of Stephen Wrentmore as the organisation’s first artistic producer.
Stephen will be providing a new level of artistic leadership as Lighthouse develops and extends its position as the South West’s leading arts provider.
“My job begins with an invitation to the many diverse publics, artists and audiences alike, that we serve to come and be a part of what we do,” says Stephen, who takes up the new post in June. “Lighthouse is a beacon of artistic excellence and I am determined it will shine even brighter as we go forward. We have a vision that 20 per cent of the work seen at Lighthouse should be created, initiated or produced in-house so it is my ambition to ensure that we encourage and enable that, by inviting the outside in and creating an environment conducive to supporting that.”
As a director Stephen has worked at the Royal National Theatre in London, as well as the Crucible, Sheffield. He has directed all over the world, staging plays in Russia, Kosovo, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Denmark, Sweden and Norway. As a consultant he has worked with a number of major arts organisations, most notably the Tate and is a fellow of the Core Leadership Programme. Since 2011 he has lived and worked in the United States, initially as associate artistic director/director of Learning at Arizona Theatre Company and latterly as the visiting Professor of Theatre at Oklahoma City University.
“Stephen arrives at Lighthouse at a particularly exciting time in its development,’ says chief executive Elspeth McBain. “We are undertaking a major upgrade of our facilities this summer that will ensure we provide a world-class experience for everyone who comes here whether as a performer, producer or audience member. We can now develop our programme to respond to both our community and the theatre sector nationally and with his proven track record and inspirational ideas, Stephen’s appointment is a hugely important part of that future.”
Lighthouse is undergoing a £5.3 million, four-month programme of works that will see a number of key changes made including the transformation of the Studio theatre, the main entrance moved to a central position, the creation of a new education and rehearsal space, a new stage door entrance, modernised dressing rooms, a Green Room and improved security. The flat floor mechanism in the Concert Hall is to be overhauled and a number of improvements made throughout the building to make it more energy-efficient.