David Ivers Named Artistic Director at South Coast Repertory

Tania Thompson
 | Sep 20, 2018
David Ivers

David Ivers

One Man Two Guvnors

One Man, Two Guvnors (actors William Connell and Dan Donohue)

A Familiar Face

David Ivers directed the wildly popular 2015 production of One Man, Two Guv’nors at South Coast Repertory. And in 2017, he was in the Pacific Playwrights Festival reading of SHREW! by Amy Freed.


SHREW! (David Ivers, center, with Assaf Cohen and Tracey A. Leigh)

Acclaimed director, educator and actor David Ivers is South Coast Repertory’s new artistic director. Board of Trustees President Samuel Tang made the announcement on Sept. 20, 2018.

He has a proven track record of theatrical excellence, dynamic leadership and creating meaningful connections with audiences. Prior to his appointment as artistic director at South Coast Repertory, he served as artistic director for Arizona Theater Company. Before that, he served more than 20 years as an actor and director at Utah Shakespeare Festival, with the last six as artistic director. He was a resident artist at Denver Center Theatre Company for a decade, acting in and/or directing more than 40 plays and has helmed productions at many of the nation’s leading regional theatres including the Guthrie Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Berkeley Repertory Theatre and South Coast Repertory (One Man, Two Guv’nors, 2015). He taught at the University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, Southern Utah University and Southern Oregon University. A Southern California native, he grew up in the San Fernando Valley area. He and his wife, Stephanie, have two sons, Jack and Elliot.

“I am profoundly grateful and deeply humbled to be SCR’s next artistic director,” says the Southern California-raised Ivers. “Returning home to California, to the organization that helped inspire my early desire to pursue a life in the theatre, is a dream come true. I’m grateful to founders David Emmes and Martin Benson and the trustees who have all guided this institution for more than half a century. I’m inspired by Managing Director Paula Tomei, the playwrights, artists and staff members who create great theatre, and in awe of the roster of new plays that have been developed at SCR. I look forward to the months ahead as my family and I make our way back ‘home.’”

He joins Paula Tomei, managing director, as co-chief executive officer of the 55-year-old Tony Award-winning theatre, and takes up the position fulltime in March 2019. Until then, he will be wrapping up prior projects and commitments, while working collaboratively to program SCR’s 2019-20 season.

“Among the pool of distinguished and diverse candidates, David immediately stood out,” said Samuel Tang, president of SCR’s Board of Trustees and chair of the search committee, when he announced the appointment. “He’s a dynamic visionary—one who will lead us into the future. We sought someone who could build on SCR’s foundation of stellar theatre artistry and strong financial position. His commitment to the classics, contemporary works and new plays align perfectly with SCR’s mission. David is a special and collaborative individual.”

“New work, classics and modern masterpieces will remain at the center of the SCR experience,” says Ivers. “I’m eager to elevate our national profile as we continue developing world premieres, supporting a wide range of emerging voices, and enhancing the complete theatre-going experience. We’ll move forward with programming that not only engages and entertains, but also allows every citizen to see themselves in our work. I’m dedicated to serving and engaging with our community—especially when attending my boys’ soccer games—while creating innovative, entertaining and surprising theatre that reflects the vibrant diversity of our region and nation.”

“I’m delighted that David will be joining SCR,” says Tomei. “He is both passionate and discerning when it comes to the art onstage and is committed to extending our work in the community. His positive energy, keen sense of humor and joyful spirit are infectious and I look forward with excitement to our partnership.”

For more on David Ivers, go here.