Longtime Globe Theatre artistic director Ruth Smillie to retire
After two decades at the artistic helm of Regina’s Globe Theatre, Ruth Smillie is saying goodbye — sort of.
Come June 30, Smillie will retire from her role as artistic director, to assume the honorary position of artistic director emeritus. As “emeritus,” she will focus on redeveloping the Prince Edward Building and helping a new artistic director settle in.
She will also direct Cinderella as the 2019-20 season’s holiday show.
“I have loved every minute of my time working at Globe Theatre. I am proud of the theatre’s many successes and achievements during my tenure,” Smillie said in a prepared statement.
This includes creating the Globe Theatre School in 2006 (which contributed to the cast of a couple of shows this season), the Actor Conservatory Training Program in 2008, and the Sandbox Series.
It also includes more than doubling the audience base for Globe Theatre’s productions and completing two capital campaigns to support upgrading the Globe Theatre’s facility.
“I am not retiring from professional theatre,” Smillie said. “It will be exciting for me to have the time to say ‘yes’ to other professional opportunities.”
The Globe will appoint an interim artistic director in September, while the board of directors has begun a search for a new artistic director, to start work in the new year.
Since Smillie was named artistic director and CEO in 1998, the Globe’s annual operating budget — 70 per cent of which is derived from ticket sales — nearly quintupled to almost $5 million.
On Feb. 1, Jaime Boldt assumed the new role of executive director, separating the artistic and business leadership positions of the Globe.
“As artistic director, Ruth has showcased socially and culturally significant productions ,” Boldt said in a news release. “Ruth has acted as significant mentor and role model to many.”
This season, Smillie was a production mentor for Making Treaty 4, a cast of mostly novice actors who had trained for months at the Globe prior to rehearsals.
The Globe will honour Smillie next season.