Artistic Director

What does an Artistic Director do?

What does an Artistic Director do?

An ARTISTIC DIRECTOR is an executive of a theatre organization who is responsible for the overarching artistic vision of the organization. This job is most often found in non-profit organizations. ARTISTIC DIRECTORS choose and develop work to support their company’s mission statement, lead the production and administrative side of a show, and oversee the creative and administrative staff. When a show is in rehearsals, they often consult with the production’s creative team to offer input and make sure everything is on track to open. ARTISTIC DIRECTORS serve as the face of the organization and work very closely with everyone, including the DEVELOPMENT department, EDUCATION department, LITERARY department, GENERAL MANAGERS, and the rest of the administrative and creative staff.


Strong written and verbal communication | Multi-tasking | Problem-Solving | Strong Ability to Lead | Organization | Public Speaking | Knowledge/Experience of Theatre Directing and Producing


Internship | Fellowships | Assisting | Associate-level Position | Degree in Arts Management or Business | Directing

How to become an Artistic Director

How to become an Artistic Director

Many colleges and universities offer degrees and concentrations in entertainment business and theatre administration. However, because the role of an artistic director is specific to an organization, artistic directors typically have a wide variety of experience directing, producing, and managing theatrical productions. Artistic directors often begin with fellowships, apprenticeships, and assisting/associate positions in the artistic departments of theatre organizations. Those starting out may want to strengthen their skills by taking online or in person courses focusing on producing, theatre management, arts administration, and directing. Internships are also a great way to get a better understanding of working in an artistic department of a theatre.

LincolnCenterTheater’s “Andre Bishop, LCT Artistic Director (Part 1)”

LincolnCenterTheater’s “Andre Bishop, LCT Artistic Director (Part 2)”

Center Theatre Group’s “Working in Theatre: Artistic Director”

American Theatre Wing’s “Artistic Directors (Working In The Theatre #255)”

ShowbizU: Artistic Director & Dramaturge- Elise Dewsberry and Tim Kashani

Diane Paulus, Artistic Director of the American Repertory Theater