Haysam Kadri named interim ATP artistic director

Shakespeare Company artistic director Haysam Kadri was appointed interim artistic director of Alberta Theatre Projects Monday.

Haysam Kadri was announced as Alberta Theatre Projects' interim artistic director Monday.

Kadri, a Calgary native who spent six years at the Stratford Festival, will step in and assist the theatre and interim executive director Kyle Russell as the company attempts to navigate its way out of the pandemic.

He will also continue his work as the artistic director of the Shakespeare Company.

He said his main objective will be to honour the legacy - and the programming - of the late Darcy Evans, who died after announcing the 2020-21 season that was cancelled due to the pandemic.

“I am thrilled and humbled to be trusted with the interim artistic leadership of Alberta Theatre Projects, a company which has been a trailblazer for collaborative and cutting-edge work for 50 years,” said Kadri. “I look forward to supporting that continued legacy and building off the great momentum that Darcy established.”

Kadri was involved with two projects scheduled for the 2020-21 season that was cancelled due to the pandemic: directing Bang Bang and partnering with ATP, The Shakespeare Company and Hit & Myth Productions on Teenage Dick.

As far as whether those shows will make it onstage next season, Kadri said it's all up in the air including the question of whether there will be shows in the fall.

"We have not received any information from anybody in terms of regulations lifted and plays are going to happen at this time," he said. "It's still a waiting game."

"It's like everybody: day-to-day and waiting to navigate the landmines of COVID," he said. "There's no real directive right now, but there will be and I'm sure there's going to be a time when we'll have to make some executive decisions, a shift and recalibrate. Adjusting and adapting."

Kadri grew up in Calgary and said some of his formative theatre experiences as a young aspiring actor were attending shows at Alberta Theatre Projects.