Celebration Theatre Announces New Artistic and Executive Direcotrs
Aug 17, 2011
Celebration Theatre announced today that Associate Artistic Director, John Michael Beck, will succeed Michael A. Shepperd as Artistic Director of the 29 year-old Los Angeles Institution. Mr. Shepperd will now be devoting his full time attention to his acting and directing careers. Celebration also announces that Michael C. Kricfalusi will move from Managing Director to Executive Director of the theatre. The appointments are effective immediately.
A graduate of Lamar University in Beaumont, TX, Beck has been a member of the theatre communities of Dallas and San Francisco before moving to Los Angeles in 2005. John Michael's theatre background includes stints in teaching and directing at Plano Children's Theatre and Jewish Community Center of Dallas and Director of Development at Inquiline Theatre Company in San Francisco. In 2003, he became the co-founder and Artistic Director of SteinBeck Presents whose mission was to aid in the development of up and coming playwrights and their scripts. In August 2008, Beck made his Celebration Theatre debut in Sissystrata and went on to have roles in A Christmas Carol and F*cking Men. After becoming Associate Artistic Director at Celebration Theatre, he produced Women Behind Bars and the world premiere musical, The Next Fairy Tale. During this time, Beck also created the workshop series, CT Tuesdays, which has since garnered a GLAAD nomination for the series' first entrant, revolver.
"Celebration has been the voice of a community for the past 29 years and to be a company member is to know the company's past," Beck commented. "We will be diving into the archives and looking over stories and the production history left to us by our founder Chuck Rowland and past Artistic Directors like Robert Schrock, Richard Israel and the many other talented artists who have passed through our doors. It's a very simple motto: Honor our past, Distinguish our present, Create our future."
Between his first start in the theatre business and this second one, Michael C. Kricfalusi married, had children and built a successful career in the investment and banking worlds. Past stage productions include Take Me Out, The Daddy Machine, WeHo and Five Finger Discount at Celebration Theatre, The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told and a production of Twelve Angry Men in Hollywood, the both of which he also directed. In addition to stage productions, Michael produced a film "Special Needs" which was released on DVD in July, 2007.
"Having been the Managing Director to Michael Shepperd's Artistic Director, I can say immediately that the biggest success was creating a partnership together that was a give and take," Kricfalusi explained. "It's something I'm taking into my new position as Executive Director to John Michael Beck's Artistic Director. To succeed we have to work as one and that is something that I will expand on going forward."