In the five years since he took over as the Huntington Theatre Company’s artistic director, Peter DuBois hasn’t changed his focus. He’s built on the company’s rich history both by nurturing a slate of local playwrights and recruiting high-profile projects from out of town. He’s done it while staying connected to New York City without getting lost in the neon lights.
“We have a deep commitment to the city that we’re part of,” DuBois told the Globe earlier this year. “But then we feel we’re part of a global community and part of a very vibrant theater scene.” That’s not just lip service. While the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge under artistic director Diane Paulus has become a kind of farm league for Broadway, the Huntington’s epicenter remains firmly in Boston.
Credit DuBois, 43, the Connecticut native who now calls the South End home. He’s brought in Ryan Landry and championed Melinda Lopez — she became the Huntington’s first playwright-in-residence. He landed and co-produced The Jungle Book, a musical adaptation of Disney’s 1967 film and Rudyard Kipling’s stories that ranks as the highest-grossing production in the company’s 31-year history. He’s also found time for off-Broadway projects, from freelance directing gigs to exporting Lydia Diamond’s Stick Fly, now being adapted into an hourlong drama for HBO.
All that activity hasn’t gone unnoticed. In 2013, DuBois got to break out his tux to accept the Huntington’s latest honor: the 2013 Regional Theatre Tony Award. That’s no small feat. The last local to score that Tony was the American Repertory Theater in 1986.