Mark Lamos, a resident of Sherman, Connecticut, is a director of plays, musicals and opera. The New York Times has called him "a poet of the theater," and his work receives a chapter in Samuel L. Leiter's "The Great Stage Directors: 100 Distinguished Careers of the Theater," along with legendary directors of the twentieth century. Born and raised in Chicago, educated at Northwestern University, Lamos began his career in the theater as an actor, first in Chicago and then on Broadway and in regional theater, most notably the Guthrie Theater, where he spent over three seasons, and the Old Globe Theatre, where he played the title role in Hamlet, directed by Jack O'Brien. He made his film acting debut in Longtime Companion
Since taking the helm at Westport Country Playhouse in 2009, Lamos has directed That Championship Season
; The Breath of Life
; She Loves Me
; Happy Days
; Lips Together, Teeth Apart
; and Twelfth Night, or What You Will
. In the Playhouse’s 2012 season, he will direct Stephen Sondheim & James Lapine’s Into the Woods
, a co-production with Baltimore’s CENTERSTAGE, and the world premiere of Harbor
by Chad Beguelin. He also directed the Playhouse production of Of Mice and Men
Lamos spent 17 seasons as artistic director of Connecticut's Hartford Stage, for which he accepted the Tony Award in 1989. During his tenure at Hartford Stage he staged acclaimed productions of many classics, including 14 Shakespeare plays, as well as a cycle of Ibsen dramas, including the full-length Peer Gynt
, starring Richard Thomas. Many new plays and musicals moved from Hartford to New York and beyond, and the theater premiered new work by Tony Kushner, Simon Gray, Tom Stoppard, Richard Foreman, Anne Bogart and many others. Lamos received the 1989 Connecticut Medal for the Arts and three honorary doctorates for his work at Hartford.
Lamos made his Broadway directing debut with a transfer from Hartford Stage of Our Country's Good
, for which he received a Tony Award nomination as Best Director. His other Broadway credits include Cymbeline
(Tony Award nomination for Best Revival), The Rivals
, the world premiere of A.R. Gurney’s The Grand Manner
(Lincoln Center Theater); and The Gershwin's Fascinating Rhythm
and The Deep Blue Sea
(Roundabout Theatre). Off-Broadway credits include Gurney's Buffalo Gal
and the world premiere of Gurney's Indian Blood
(Primary Stages); Big Bill
(Lincoln Center Theater); Edward Albee’s Tiny Alice
(Lortel Award, Drama Desk Award nomination); Lee Blessing's Thief River
(Signature Theatre); Love's Fire
(seven one-acts by Guare, Wasserstein, Bogosian, etc. for The Acting Company at New York Shakespeare Festival); Jon Robin Baitz's The End of the Day
(Playwrights Horizons); Measure for Measure
(Lincoln Center Theater, Lortel Award); and As You Like It
(The Public Theater/Central Park) . He most recently directed the world premiere of Gurney’s Black Tie
at Primary Stages.
Lamos was the first American director to stage a play with a Russian company in the early days of "perestroika"-- O'Neill's Desire Under the Elms
at Moscow's Pushkin Theater. He was guest director at Canada's Stratford Festival, La Jolla Playhouse, San Francisco's American Conservatory Theater, the Guthrie Lab, McCarter Theatre, The Old Globe, Ford's Theatre and the Kennedy Center where he directed Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.
His recent productions include Edgardo Mine
(Guthrie Theater), The Circle
(A.C.T. San Francisco) and Lulu
at Yale Repertory Theatre.
In the realm of opera, he directed Adriana Lecouvreur with Placido Domingo for the Metropolitan Opera. His extensive work in opera includes new productions for the Metropolitan Opera, including the world premiere of John Harbison's The Great Gatsby
(also seen at Lyric Opera of Chicago), numerous productions for New York City Opera, and new productions for San Francisco Opera, Glimmerglass Opera and the opera companies of Santa Fe, St. Louis, Seattle, Washington, Toronto, Portland, Dallas, Los Angeles, Gothenburg and Munich. Opera world premieres he has guided include Haroun and the Sea Of Stories
(New York City Opera), Central Park
(Emmy Award nomination for Best Direction, televised for PBS' "Great Performances"), Dominick Argento's The Aspern Papers
(PBS' "Great Performances"), John Harbison's Winter's Tale
(San Francisco Opera), and Tania Leon and Wole Soyinka's Scourge of Hyacinths
(Munich Biennale). New York City Opera won an Emmy Award for the Lamos'-directed Madama Butterfly
, televised on PBS' "Great Performances." Most recently, he directed the Norwegian premiere of Emmanuel Chabrier’s L’Etoile
at the city of Bergen’s Den Nye Opera.
Lamos was named a Beinecke Fellow at Yale School of Drama in 2007 and was been awarded the Stanford Chair at University of Miami in Coral Gables in 2011. He has taught at Yale and was a visiting adjunct professor in the Department of Theater at the University of Michigan.