Antoni Cimolino

Antoni Cimolino

Artistic Director, Stratford Festival

Antoni Cimolino is Artistic Director of the Stratford Festival and director of the 2015 productions of Hamlet and The Alchemist.

Born in Sudbury, Ontario, Mr. Cimolino graduated from the University of Windsor’s School of Dramatic Art.  In 1998 he came to Stratford, playing such roles as Flute in A Midsummer Night’s Dream(1989), Claudio in Measure for Measure (1992), Romeo in Romeo and Juliet(1992) and Laertes in Hamlet (1994)

He began to direct for Stratford in the mid-1990s, winning acclaim for such productions as The Night of the Iguana, with Seana McKenna (1998); Twelfth Night, with William Hutt (2001); Love’s Labour’s Lost, with Brian Bedford (2003); King John, with Stephen Ouimette (2004); As You Like It (2005); Coriolanus, (Colm Feore and Martha Henry 2006); Bartholomew Fair, with Tom McCamus (2009); The Grapes of Wrath, with Janet Wright (2011); and Cymbeline (Geraint Wyn Davies 2012).

In 2013, his first season as Artistic Director, Mr. Cimolino introduced the Stratford Festival Forum, a series of events designed to enhance the play-going experience by illustrating the relevance of the play’s themes. Also in 2013, he directed Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, with Tom McCamus and Scott Wentworth, and Friedrich Schiller’s Mary Stuart, with Lucy Peacock and Seana McKenna, a production extended an unprecedented four times. His 2014 productions, both featuring Colm Feore, were George Farquhar’s The Beaux’ Stratagem and King Lear, which became one of the top-selling Shakespeare productions in the Festival’s history.

In his previous roles as the Festival’s General Manager, General Director and Executive Director, Mr. Cimolino’s achievements included overseeing the successful launch of a stability fund and a $50-million endowment foundation. He also significantly improved the Festival’s infrastructure by leading the design, consultation and funding process for four major construction projects, including the extensive renovation of the Avon Theatre and the creation of the Studio Theatre.

In 2014, he and current Executive Director Anita Gaffney announced a 10-year project to film Festival productions of all Shakespeare’s plays. King Lear, King John and Antony and Cleopatra are already released.

 Mr. Cimolino also serves as the National Chair of Culture Days, a nationwide celebration of arts and culture. He has initiated collaborations with Montreal’s Théâtre du Nouveau Monde, Ottawa’s National Arts Centre, New York’s Lincoln Center and City Center, and the Chicago Shakespeare Theater. Examples include the 2006 production of Molière’s Don Juan, a co-production with Théâtre du Nouveau Monde, presented in both French and English during its Stratford season and later transferred to Montreal, and 2004’s King Lear, which later moved to New York, garnering two Tony nominations.

Mr. Cimolino’s passion for enriching the lives of others through the education and practice of the arts has led him to spearhead the Festival’s involvement in a joint project with CUSO, Canada’s international volunteer agency, to establish a performing arts and educational centre in Suchitoto, El Salvador.

Now in his 28th season at the Festival, Mr. Cimolino is a respected artist and an influential leader in the global theatrical community


ID Event Name Duration Start Date
Victory and After Full Day September 17, 2015


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