Featured Image: left – right, Casey William Gallagher, Jason King Jones (images provided courtesy of Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival)
CENTER VALLEY, PA: August 1, 2022—Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, the region’s professional Equity theatre hosted on the campus of DeSales University, announces a new artistic turnover and leadership model. Determined through a national search, Jason King Jones, the former Senior Associate Artistic Director of Maryland’s Olney Theatre Center, has been hired as the new artistic director and he will join current Managing Director Casey William Gallagher in a new dual leadership model. The news comes following Patrick Mulcahy’s announcement one year ago that he will step down from his role at the Festival at the end of this summer 2022. Mulcahy served as Producing Artistic Director of Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival (PSF) since 2003.
In a statement, Board President Judith Harris, Esq. said, “The PSF Board of Directors welcomes new Artistic Director Jason King Jones with much delight and excitement. Jason’s extensive experience in the Shakespeare canon, musical theatre, and both classical and innovative theatre are in uncanny alignment with PSF’s vision of excellence in artistry and mission. Moreover, Jason’s versatility, organizational talents, and leadership are in perfect sync with the careful and brilliant fiscal management and pragmatic administration of Managing Director Casey Gallagher over his nearly 19 years in managing PSF and its gifted staff. In light of the Board’s recent adoption of a dual leadership model, Jason and Casey are, together, a formidably wonderful team who will surely lead PSF in realizing its artistic and strategic goals.”
Gallagher, who has worked at PSF for 25 seasons in a variety of positions, and presently serves as managing director had this to say about his new leadership role, “Over the years, it has been my honor to work side-by-side with the Festival Founder Gerard J. Schubert, OSFS and with Patrick Mulcahy since 2004, and now I am thrilled to work with Jason as we co-lead the Festival into an exciting future.”
Bringing over a decade of experience as the Senior Associate Artistic Director at Olney Theatre Center, and Artistic Director of OTC’s National Players touring company, Jones said this at the time of accepting the position, “I am deeply honored to be invited to co-lead this fantastic organization. I got my professional start at a summer Shakespeare festival, and I believe deeply in the expansive power of Shakespeare as well as the power of mentorship that an organization like Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival provides. Everyone associated with PSF, including my co-leader Casey, believes deeply in this institution, and I can’t wait to work with them to forge with them a dynamic future.”
Jones will join Gallagher in this new appointment beginning September 1, 2022.
About Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival
Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival is the only professional Equity theatre of its scope and scale within a 50-mile radius. PSF is one of only a handful of theatres on the continent producing Shakespeare, musicals, classics, and contemporary plays, all of which can normally be seen in rep and in multiple spaces within a few visits in a single summer season. Similarly, PSF was among just a handful of theatres on the continent in recent summers to produce three Shakespeare plays in a single summer season. A patron would have to travel seven to nine hours from PSF to find a comparable range of offerings at a single theatre within a few weeks’ time.
The Festival’s award-winning company of many world-class artists includes Broadway, film, and television veterans, and winners and nominees of the Tony, Emmy, Obie, Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk, Jefferson, Hayes, Lortel, and Barrymore awards. A leading Shakespeare theatre with a national reputation for excellence, PSF has received coverage in The Washington Post, NPR, American Theatre Magazine, Playbill.com, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and in recent seasons The New York Times has identified PSF as one of the leading summer theatre festivals in the nation. “A world-class theater experience on a par with the top Bard fests,” is how one New York Drama Desk reviewer characterized PSF.
Founded in 1992 and the Official Shakespeare Festival of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, PSF’s mission is to enrich, inspire, engage, and entertain the widest possible audience through first-rate productions of classical and contemporary plays, with a core commitment to Shakespeare and other master dramatists, and through an array of education and mentorship programs. A not-for-profit theatre, PSF receives significant support from its host, DeSales University, from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Traditionally, with 150 performances of seven productions, the Festival attracts patrons each summer from 30+ states. In 30 years, PSF has offered 200+ total productions (82 Shakespeare), and entertained 1,000,000+ patrons from 50 states, now averaging 34,000-40,000 in attendance each summer season, plus another 13,000 students each year through its WillPower Tour to schools. PSF is a multi-year recipient of awards from the National Endowment for the Arts: Shakespeare in American Communities, and is a constituent of Theatre Communications Group, and the Shakespeare Theatre Association (STA). In 2013, leaders of the world’s premiere Shakespeare theatres gathered at PSF as the Festival hosted the international STA Conference.
The Festival’s vision is for world-class theatre.
Information provided to TVL by:
Tina Louise Slak
Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival
The Professional Theatre at DeSales University
2755 Station Avenue
Center Valley, PA 18034
p: 610-282-WILL  www.pashakespeare.org