The 20-year-old Aurora Theatre, which seems to grow its staff each spring, has done so again.

auroralogoThe Lawrenceville company, a perennial Suzi Bass Award contender, is led by co-founders Anthony P. Rodriguez and Ann-Carol Pence, who oversee a $7 million, two-theater complex with an annual budget of about $2 million.

Renita James joins the company as education coordinator; Lauren Robinson becomes assistant technical director. The hires bring the full-time staff at the Lawrenceville theater to 16.


James was part of Aurora’s inaugural acting apprentice company, appearing in Unnecessary Monsters. She also appeared in Synchronicity Theatre’s Petite Rouge: A Cajun Red Riding Hood for two seasons. Most recently, she was a teaching artist fellow with Metro Theater Company in St. Louis, teaching theater in residencies and school-based classes, as well as developing and performing in a Theatre for the Very Young piece.

She has been pursuing work that uses theater as an avenue for education, social justice and building community, all of which she’ll be doing at Aurora.


Robinson, a recent Kennesaw State University graduate, worked as a carpenter, master electrician and technical director in school, and professionally as a carpenter and electrician for Aurora, Actor’s Express, Atlanta Lyric Theatre, Dad’s Garage, Horizon Theatre and 7 Stages.

Aurora’s 2015/16 season, by the way, concludes June 5. Until then, the 1986 Tony Award-winning comedy I’m Not Rappaport continues at 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 2:30 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.226.6222.

The company’s 2016/17 begins big in July with a Theatrical Outfit co-production of In the Heights, the 2008 Tony Award-winning musical with a score by Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton) and a book by Quiara Alegría Hudes, a Pulitzer Prize winner for her 2012 drama Water by the Spoonful. Time Magazine called it “the West Side Story for a new generation.” Theatrical Outfit stages the piece Sept. 8-18 at the Rialto Center for the Arts in downtown Atlanta.


Season ticket information is available HERE or at 678.226.6222. Single seats will be sold closer to the show’s opening night.

About Kathy Janich

Kathy Janich is a longtime arts journalist who has been seeing, working in or writing about the performing arts for most of her life. She's a member of the Theatre Communications Group, the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas, Americans for the Arts and the National Arts Marketing Project. Full disclosure: She’s also an artistic associate at Synchronicity Theatre.

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