Kyle Haden has joined Ashland New Plays Festival as its new artistic director.

Haden, 37, is a professional actor, director and educator with deep roots in theater. He's worn many hats at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, directing Midnight Projects and School Visit shows and serving on the Boar's Head committee. He heads up OSF's Summer Seminar program and serves on the OSF Institute faculty. He taught for three years at Southern Oregon University and is an assistant professor at the Chicago College of Performing Arts.

“I am honored to accept the position of artistic director with Ashland New Plays Festival, and I am so excited to have this opportunity,” Haden says in a press release. “I have been familiar with ANPF since working on a project with them in 2003, and I have always been impressed by the passion the people involved in the organization have for theater. This is an exciting time to be part of ANPF, and I look forward to working with the board, as well as all of the volunteers who make this such a special organization, as we seek out outstanding new plays.”

ANPF President James Pagliasotti, who led the search for the new artistic director, says Haden is a great fit.

“Ashland New Plays Festival has been blessed with a 24-year legacy of bringing new plays to Ashland’s sophisticated theater audiences. We are so pleased and proud to have Kyle Haden as our new artistic director. He was unanimously chosen from a strong field of candidates. We are confident that his skills, experience and vision will usher in a new era of excellence in artistic direction at ANPF."

Now in it's 24th year, ANPF draws playwrights and theater lovers from around the country for a week of readings, Q-and-A sessions and workshops each fall while celebrating new works for the stage.