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OSF appoints interim associate artistic director

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival appointed Evren Odcikin as interim associate artistic director this week.

His first day is Monday, July 29. He’ll train under OSF’s associate artistic director of 12 years, Christopher Acebo, through the end of this season as Acebo transitions out and Odcikin moves in.

Odcikin works as a director, producer and arts administrator based in the San Francisco Bay Area.

“I am deeply humbled by this appointment,” Odcikin said. “OSF represents the kind of big-imagination, high-quality and civic-minded artmaking that I’ve always looked for in my career. When I experienced the unparalleled scope and ambition of the festival for the first time, it felt like magic. The fact that now I get to be part of the team that makes this magic happen for others is a real honor.”

His new role requires him to act as the artistic department liaison for resident company and other departments at OSF, and undertake procedural and programming responsibilities.

Artistic Director Nataki Garrett said her choice in Odcikin comes from years of observing his work.

“I’ve known Evren for years as a creative force and leader who has distinguished himself as an artist with deeply held community-based values essential to the building of institutional excellence,” Garrett said. “OSF is one of the largest true repertory theaters in the United States. Understanding the best way to take care of the artists, volunteers and staff that uphold its level of excellence and acclaim requires a unique combination of ... talent, strategic acumen and vision. I’m thrilled to welcome Evren onto an artistic leadership team that recognizes and champions these qualities.”

Until recently, Odcikin served as director of new plays and marketing at Golden Thread Productions, the first American theater company devoted to the Middle East. He now works as a resident artist with the company.

He’s under commission with Leila Buck to adapt “A Thousand and One Nights” for the California Shakespeare Theater. He previously directed and adapted Plautus’ “The Braggart Soldier” for Custom Made Theatre Company.

He’s worked all over the country for theaters such as New York Theatre Workshop, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, South Coast Repertory, The Lark, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, InterAct Theatre Company and Cleveland Public Theatre.

Odcikin was born and raised in Turkey and is a co-founder of Mai Directors, a consulting group dedicated to helping artists and organizations engage with Middle Eastern stories.

He was most recently communications consultant for KQED’s Campaign 21, a multiyear, $135 million fundraising program to fund innovation and expand services.

He graduated from Princeton University with an engineering degree in computer science and a certificate in the program in theater and dance.

Contact Tidings reporter Caitlin Fowlkes at cfowlkes@rosebudmedia.com or 541-776-4496. Follow her on Twitter @cfowlkes6.

(June 18: Story updated to correct Christopher Acebo's title from artistic director to associate artistic director.)

Evren Odcikin