Tenure:2010 - 2013
Select Productions:• The Night of the Iguana
• Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
• The Tempest
Jeremy Hutton (1980-2013) was the eleventh artistic director of Hart House Theatre, the first person appointed to that position in over 30 years. A director, actor, musician, and fight choreographer, Jeremy Hutton was Hart House Theatre’s youngest artistic director and was responsible for reviving the long-tradition of student involvement and education at the theatre.
Born in Kitchener-Waterloo, Hutton’s first love was music, not the theatre. A gifted trumpet player he spent much of his youth performing across Canada and in the United States. Although he studied classical performance at UofT’s music program, he found himself gravitating more towards acting and the theatre. As Hutton describes it, “the classical music career is limited… if I had to play Pachebel’s Canon at somebody’s wedding one more time, I would have shot myself in the face.”1
In 2004, while working with the Halifax company, Shakespeare by the Sea, Hutton began Robin Hood: The Legendary Musical Comedy. Nearly 10 years later he would remount the project at Hart House as part of the 2012-2013 season (one of the first original musicals in a Hart House season.2
Hutton joined the fledgling Toronto Youth Theatre (TYT)—a company providing extracurricular opportunities for young people in theatre—in 2005 as an artistic director. His involvement in TYT would spark his passion for arts education and youth-programming, believing that much of the opportunities and programming directed at young people was condescending.3 Drawing from his musical background Hutton is also the composer/creator of several musicals for young adults, ToboR the RoboT and Fairytale Ending (voted Best of Fringe in 2010).
Hutton’s formal association with Hart House Theatre began shortly after his graduation from the University of Toronto. His appearance in a production of As You Like It (2003) would mark the beginning of a long string of performance and directing roles at the theatre. With his 2004 production of Othello, he became one of the youngest directors. His biggest role came in 2006 when he starred as the titular character in Hamlet (directed by Andrea Wasserman). Hutton’s performance was highly acclaimed with The Varsity writing that he “play[ed] Hamlet like he’[d] been waiting for this role his whole life” filling it with “humour, intensity and tragedy.”4
Known for his close adherence to Shakespeare’s source material (Hutton has generally resisted the tendency to modernize Shakespeare) over the last decade he has been behind most of Hart House’s Shakespeare productions; Othello (2004), Romeo and Juliet (2005), King Lear (2008), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (2009), Richard III (2010), Macbeth (2011), Romeo and Juliet (2012).
In 2010 Jeremy Hutton was appointed as the first artistic director of Hart House Theatre in over 30 years, described by Theatre management as a “key investment that will not only strengthen the future of the Theatre.”5 Hutton’s tenure saw the return of many student initiatives. He revived the Hart House Players (which had taken various forms since the departure of the Players Club from the theatre in the 1925) as well as led the creation of the Drama Coalition Awards—a campus wide student awards ceremony. With his contract expiring in 2013, Jeremy Hutton has moved onto other projects, working with the Classic Theatre Project and the Lower Ossington Theatre.
- Jason McBride, “Enter Stage Left | By Jason McBride | University of Toronto Magazine,” accessed March 11, 2014, http://www.magazine.utoronto.ca/feature/enter-stage-left-hart-house-jeremy-hutton-jason-mcbride/. ↩
- A Few Words with Hart House’s Jeremy Hutton,” Inthegreenroom, accessed March 4, 2014, http://inthegreenroom.ca/2013/01/23/a-few-words-with-hart-houses-jeremy-hutton/. ↩
- “Helping Youth Learn through the Arts,” accessed March 4, 2014, http://www.insidetoronto.com/news-story/7877-helping-youth-learn-through-the-arts/. ↩
- “Honourable Hamlet,” accessed March 11, 2014, http://thevarsity.ca/2006/11/20/honourable-hamlet/. ↩
- “Hart House Theatre Announces Jeremy Hutton as Artistic Director,” BroadwayWorld.com, accessed March 11, 2014, http://www.broadwayworld.com/article/Hart-House-Theatre-Announces-Jeremy-Hutton-as-Artistic-Director-20100622. ↩