Theatre educator, stage director and arts leader Paul Daigneault—a 1987 graduate of Boston College—has been named the University’s Rev. J. Donald Monan, S.J. Professor in Theatre Arts for the 2011-2012 academic year.
Daigneault is the founder and producing artistic director of SpeakEasy Stage Company in Boston, a mid-sized resident regional theater currently celebrating its twentieth season. Under his leadership, SpeakEasy is one of the most successful and respected professional theaters in New England, with a strong reputation for producing regional premieres of contemporary musicals and plays.
Daigneault is the first BC alumnus to hold the prestigious Monan Professorship in Theatre Arts. During his year-long residency, he will direct a production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s critically acclaimed musical Into the Woods, as part of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of BC’s Robsham Theater Arts Center. He will also teach an advanced class in Musical Theater Performance, serve as a mentor to student directors, and as a guest lecturer in other courses.
“I look forward to returning to BC to work with students over the course of an entire school year,” Daigneault said. “I’m curious to see how things have changed since I was a student a generation ago.”
Daigneault has remained involved with his alma mater. In 2007, in recognition of his professional success with SpeakEasy, he received the Alumni Award for Distinguished Achievement from BC’s Arts Council and was a special guest during the University’s annual Arts Festival, during which the award was presented.
Named for University Chancellor and former Boston College President J. Donald Monan, S.J., the professorship enables the Theatre Department to bring nationally and internationally recognized professional theater artists to work with, and teach, undergraduate students at the University. In addition to honoring Fr. Monan’s dedicated service to BC, the professorship was established in memory of late Trustee E. Paul Robsham, M.Ed.’83.
Daigneault will be the fifth Monan visiting artist, following Karen MacDonald (2010-11), director Carmel O’Reilly (spring 2010), actor Remo Airaldi (fall 2009), and Broadway music director Mary- Mitchell Campbell (2008-09).