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Greif center stage at La Jolla

Stage director Michael Greif has been named artistic director at the La Jolla Playhouse, succeeding Des McAnuff when he exits at the end of this season.

Greif, currently staging Donald Margulies’ “The Loman Family Picnic” at the Center Stage in Baltimore, first worked at the La Jolla Playhouse in 1983 as an assistant to McAnuff.

During 1983 and 1984, he assisted McAnuff on productions of “Romeo and Juliet ,””As You Like It” and “Big River” while in the graduate directing program at UC San Diego.

He went on to direct Japanese, Australian and U.S. tours of “Big River.”

At the playhouse, he co-directed with Bill Irwin “The Three Cuckolds” in 1986 and directed Joe Orton’s “What the Butler Saw” in 1992.

He’s worked at theaters across the country including the Naked Angels Theatre in New York, the Remains Theatre in Chicago, Hartford Stage Company in Connecticut, Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts and the Dallas Theater Center in Providence.

The late Joseph Papp invited Greif to be one of four directors-in-residence at the Public Theater, where Greif restaged “Machinal” in 1990. The show went on to receive an Obie Award and a Drama Desk nomination.

McAnuff, who is due to direct a revival of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” starring Matthew Broderick (opening Oct. 30), will be a director-in-residence at La Jolla beginning in 1995.

He’s committed to directing at least one production there per year but will concentrate his career on film projects.

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