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By Mona Shadia and Brianna Bailey | February 4, 2010
Their theater production company started out with $17, a station wagon, and a collective vision to change American theater. Forty-six years later, South Coast Repertory boasts a three-theater complex, plays that have garnered awards — including a Tony — and an annual budget of $9 million. On Thursday, South Coast Rep co-founders David Emmes and Martin Benson announced they are stepping aside to make room for a new artistic director to lead the acclaimed Costa Mesa theater production company, which began in Newport Beach in 1964.
NEWS
March 12, 2008
South Coast Repertory has announced its 2008 Pacific Playwrights Festival the weekend of May 2 through 4 will feature seven new commissioned plays. The festival will highlight “The Injured Party” by Richard Greenberg and “What They Have” by Kate Robin, as well as staged readings of plays written by Amy Freed, Lauren Gunderson, John Kolvenbach and Lynn Nottage, and a workshop production by Sharr White. Artistic directors David Emmes and Martin Benson will be awarded May 1 the 2007-08 Margo Jones Medal for their achievements in pioneering the living theater.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 31, 2008
In a May 1 ceremony that will begin this year?s Pacific Playwright?s Festival at South Coast Repertory, artistic directors David Emmes and Martin Benson will be awarded the 2007-08 Margo Jones Medal for their achievements in pioneering the living theater. South Coast Repertory was founded by Emmes and Benson in 1964, and over the years the theater has premiered 103 plays and presented works that included Margaret Edson?s ?Wit,? winner of the 1999 Pulitzer Prize, as well as ?Rabbit Hole,?
NEWS
February 16, 2011
COSTA MESA — In a special meeting Wednesday, the South Coast Repertory's board of trustees appointed Marc Masterson to take over its artistic direction starting in April. SCR founders and current artistic directors, David Emmes and Martin Benson, will stay on and advise in the new role of founding directors. Masterson has led artists at the Actors Theatre in Louisville, Ky., for the past 11 years, working on more than 100 production premieres that eventually toured the country.
FEATURES
By B.W. COOK | August 26, 2008
The summer sunset haze obliterated the Pacific Ocean view, turning sea and sky into one massive silver horizon. One hundred guests of Pam and Jim Muzzy mingled on the limestone terrace of the sprawling California contemporary ocean residence infused with touches of old-world European elegance and inspired by artistic vision, oblivious to the gray pale surrounding them. They had come together, once again, as they have done year after year, on behalf of their much-loved South Coast Repertory Theatre.
NEWS
From latimes.com | November 11, 2010
COSTA MESA — South Coast Repertory is running behind schedule in choosing a new artistic director, but that's understandable. Succession at the top is a drill the Costa Mesa theater never has run before. In February, founders Martin Benson and David Emmes, who launched the company in 1964, announced they would be stepping down after 46 seasons, outlining a gradualist transition that would include naming their successor by the start of the current season. But the season is into its third month and there's still no heir apparent to the two artistic directors, who intend to remain active even after the choice is made by continuing to direct plays and have a say in what gets staged in the seasons ahead.
NEWS
March 4, 2000
Tom Titus The year was 1947. Americans were still in a euphoric, self-congratulatory mood following victories on two fronts in World War II. Then a budding young playwright named Arthur Miller threw a monkey wrench into the works with his first Broadway play, "All My Sons." Miller's postwar counterpunch was a body blow that still packs a wallop, particularly when presented with such uncompromising power as South Coast Repertory offers in its revival, the latest in the company's American Classics series.
NEWS
February 27, 2010
After a 45-year run, the curtain has come down on one of the greatest acts in Orange County. Martin Benson and David Emmes, the co-founders of South Coast Repertory, earlier this month announced that they were giving up their main roles at the acclaimed Costa Mesa theater company. They are stepping aside to make room for a new leader who will take on South Coast Repertory’s artistic directorial duties, which Benson and Emmes shared, with great success, all these years. The duo will linger in the wings, more or less in an emeriti role.
NEWS
November 8, 1999
Maybe they should have gone to Las Vegas instead. David Emmes and Martin Benson, co-founders of South Coast Repertory, probably didn't realize their luck Tuesday night when they showed up at the crowded Costa Mesa premiere of the new trailer for the Theater District. But when it came time to raffle off a few door prizes, both Emmes and Benson were holding winning tickets. As it turned out, though, their luck didn't do them very much good. Benson's exciting prize was a pair of tickets to see a show at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, South Coast Rep's next-door neighbor.
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Rhea Mahbubani | April 3, 2014
Olivia Johnson was 30,000-plus feet in the air when she first read the script for "Rest. " Tears coursed down her cheeks as she learned about dementia patient Gerald and his wife, Etta, en route to San Francisco for Thanksgiving. The story hit too close to home for the Tustin Hills resident and South Coast Repertory board member, whose mother was struggling with the same affliction and, like the play's protagonist, lived in a senior center. Alice Gedikian was weeks away from her 100th birthday, and her health was rapidly declining.
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NEWS
By Jill Cowan | January 23, 2014
What's in a name? A lot, said Paul Folino, former president of the South Coast Repertory board. It just doesn't have to be his. "I've never done anything I've done in Orange County to get my name on a building," he said Wednesday night, just after a dedication ceremony for the renamed David Emmes and Martin Benson Theatre Center. Together, Emmes and Benson founded South Coast Repertory and served as its artistic directors. At the company's 50th season gala in September, Folino said it was about time the pair's contributions to the repertory were recognized - even if it meant replacing his own name on the company's flagship venue.
ENTERTAINMENT
By B.W. Cook | September 26, 2013
There was a time, not many years ago, when Orange County was the cultural stepchild of Los Angeles. Boy, have things changed. Today, on many fronts, the O.C. leads the charge in such areas as the performing arts, visual arts, healthcare and scientific advancement, and all the while enjoying a standard of living that is enviable worldwide. The proof of Orange County's cultural achievement was displayed Saturday evening at a first-class event marking the golden anniversary of South Coast Repertory.
NEWS
February 16, 2011
COSTA MESA — In a special meeting Wednesday, the South Coast Repertory's board of trustees appointed Marc Masterson to take over its artistic direction starting in April. SCR founders and current artistic directors, David Emmes and Martin Benson, will stay on and advise in the new role of founding directors. Masterson has led artists at the Actors Theatre in Louisville, Ky., for the past 11 years, working on more than 100 production premieres that eventually toured the country.
NEWS
From latimes.com | November 11, 2010
COSTA MESA — South Coast Repertory is running behind schedule in choosing a new artistic director, but that's understandable. Succession at the top is a drill the Costa Mesa theater never has run before. In February, founders Martin Benson and David Emmes, who launched the company in 1964, announced they would be stepping down after 46 seasons, outlining a gradualist transition that would include naming their successor by the start of the current season. But the season is into its third month and there's still no heir apparent to the two artistic directors, who intend to remain active even after the choice is made by continuing to direct plays and have a say in what gets staged in the seasons ahead.
NEWS
February 27, 2010
After a 45-year run, the curtain has come down on one of the greatest acts in Orange County. Martin Benson and David Emmes, the co-founders of South Coast Repertory, earlier this month announced that they were giving up their main roles at the acclaimed Costa Mesa theater company. They are stepping aside to make room for a new leader who will take on South Coast Repertory’s artistic directorial duties, which Benson and Emmes shared, with great success, all these years. The duo will linger in the wings, more or less in an emeriti role.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Mona Shadia and Brianna Bailey | February 5, 2010
This corrects an earlier version. Their theater production company started out with $17, a station wagon, and a collective vision to change American theater. Forty-six years later, South Coast Repertory boasts a three-theater complex, plays that have garnered awards — including a Tony — and an annual budget of $9 million. On Thursday, South Coast Rep co-founders David Emmes and Martin Benson announced they are stepping aside to make room for a new artistic director to lead the acclaimed Costa Mesa theater production company, which began in Newport Beach in 1964.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tom Titus | December 3, 2008
Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of three columns reviewing local theater in 2008. The second and third installments are planned for Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.   Sometimes the oldies really are the goodies, especially in the craftsmanlike hands of director Martin Benson and his colleagues at South Coast Repertory. As we look back over the repertory’s productions in 2008, several of them world premieres, the one that stands out most impressively has more than a century’s worth of miles on its odometer.
FEATURES
By B.W. COOK | September 12, 2008
“One day you will be walking through the theater district in New York or London and on a marquee you will see a play by Sarah Ruhl ,” offered Martin Benson , artistic director and co-founder of South Coast Repertory Theatre. Ruhl wrote a new work titled “Dead Man’s Cell Phone,” which will debut on the Julianne Argyros Stage at South Coast Repertory on Sept. 21, running through Oct. 24 this season. Benson joined his artistic partner David Emmes and South Coast Repertory board chairman Wylie Aitken on the stage of the grand ballroom Saturday at The St. Regis Resort in Monarch Beach to celebrate the dawning of the 45th season of repertory theater in Orange County.
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