Bob Hupp to Leave Arkansas Repertory Theatre

Put on a brave face, Little Rock. 

The Arkansas Repertory Theatre announced on Thursday that producing artistic director Robert Hupp will resign at the end of the season.

The Rep is currently celebrating its 40th mainstage season, Hupp’s 17th at the theater. Come June, Hupp will set sail for New York and assume his new role as the artistic director of Syracuse Stage.

“It’s been an honor to steward The Rep for these past seventeen years,” Hupp said in a news release. “I am especially grateful to the kind and generous patrons of central Arkansas who make creating theatre here fun and rewarding. 

“Little Rock has been a tremendous place to raise a family, and a wonderful place to call home. I’ve been extremely lucky to work with such a dedicated board of directors and a multi-talented Rep staff,” he said. “Arkansas Rep’s future is very bright, and I look forward to being a fan for years to come.”

During its 40-year history, The Rep has seen only two in the leadership role with Hupp following company founder Cliff Baker after he stepped down in 1999. Since taking the reins, Hupp has grown the theater exponentially—tripling the annual budget, executing renovations, opening the black box theatre and education space and more. 

With 28 productions at The Rep under his belt, some of the most memorable include “The Grapes of Wrath,” “God’s Man in Texas,” “Les Miserables,” “August: Osage County,” “The Little Mermaid” and this spring’s new comedy “Windfall,” directed by Seinfeld’s Jason Alexander.

“For nearly two decades, The Rep has been fortunate to have one of the country’s premier producing artistic directors at the helm,” president of The Rep’s board of directors Catherine Hughes said. “While we celebrate Bob and wish him well in his new venture, we will sorely miss his energetic and intelligent leadership. He has played an integral part in the life of our community, and his departure will create a void which will be difficult to fill. On behalf of the Board and the community at large, I offer Bob our deepest gratitude for creating Broadway-quality theatre on our local stage.”

As for the upcoming 2016-17 season, Hupp will arrange the lineup before he leaves. The company is forming a committee to conduct a national search for his successor.


Excited for Bob Hupp’s future role in Syracuse, but needing a little time to process? Yeah, us too. We plan on doing that with a giant bowl of ice cream while perusing some of our favorite Soirée stories featuring Bob Hupp:

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