Public Theater Annouces Shakespeare Double-Bill for Central Park Summer, Loses Exec

02/03/2011 1:36 PM |

Delacorte Theater in winter

Only a day after announcing on Tuesday that its Shakespeare In The Park double-bill for 2011 would feature Measure for Measure and All’s Well That Ends Well, the Public Theater lost its Executive Director Andrew D. Hamingson, who resigned yesterday after over two years as the institution’s top financial officer.

First, the good news: the Public’s annual summer residency at the Delacorte will feature two problem plays about deceitful protagonists who don disguises and orchestrate illicit sexual encounters to get what they want. Both will run in repertory from June 6 through July 31, with Merchant of Venice director Daniel Sullivan at the helm of All’s Well That Ends Well—in which adopted young woman Helena connives to wed, bed and win back the love of her life (and sort of adoptive brother) Count Bertram—and David Esbjornson, who did the Public’s Much Ado About Nothing in Central Park, will direct Measure for Measure—about the Duke of Vienna Vincentio pretending to leave the stern judge Angelo in charge of the city and conspiring (disguised as a friar) to undermine his strict enforcement of the municipal law prohibiting fornication. Casting annoucements are still a long way off, but this much is already promising—if the Public can turn something so challenging as Merchant into a Broadway hit, these should be a walk in… the park.

Then yesterday, ArtsBeat reported that Andrew D. Hamingson, executive director, is resigning from the Public Theater. He didn’t give any specific explanation, but told the Times it was for personal reasons and that his resignation would “speak for itself.” Given how well Public productions are doing these days, though, his brief tenure went pretty damn well—early closing of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson notwithstanding, that is.