The Public Theater

Location: New York, NY

Founded: 1954


The Public Theater was founded by Joseph Papp as the Shakespeare Workshop, and currently resides in the former Astor Library in the East Village. The organization presented the world premiere of the musical Hair and is dedicated to producing new works by emerging artists, as well as Shakespeare and other classic material.

Notable Products

  • Shakespeare in the Park
  • Joe’s Pub
  • Five theater spaces
  • Delacorte Theater
  • Under the Radar Festival
  • Musical Theater Initiative

What to Expect

The Public Theater is one of the nation’s most celebrated theatrical organizations, having won more than 40 Tony Awards, over 140 Obies, and four Pulitzer Prizes. The Public Theater has brought numerous productions to Broadway, including A Chorus Line, The Pirates of Penzance, Topdog/Underdog, and a much-lauded Merchant of Venice starring Al Pacino. Among the Public’s other activities are Shakespeare in the Park, at the Delacorte outdoor stage in Central Park, and Joe’s Pub, where emerging musicians and poets take the stage in a cabaret-style lounge. An average of six shows are produced each season, with additional support for the Public’s festivals and Broadway projects.

Artistic director Oskar Eustis and executive director Andrew D. Hamingson helm the organization. Both temporary freelance and permanent employment opportunities exist with the Public Theater, in the areas of theater management, artistic direction, marketing, development, press, finance, IT, casting production, and literary initiatives. Specific roles within production that are considered permanent are: scenic charge artist, production manager, lighting designer, costume master, scenery supervisor, and engineer. Midlevel and entry-level positions are available for script readers, press assistants, operations assistants, casting assistants, and other associate or assistant production positions. Freelance or temporary employment is based on the needs of individual productions and may include company manager, spotlight operator, audio technician, and props technician. The Public Theater offers an internship program that includes tickets to shows and training seminars, as well as hands-on experience in theatrical management and production. Interns are paid a small stipend for their work.

As for “company culture,” the Public Theater organization is considered avant-garde, cutting-edge, and certainly not mainstream. New works produced at the theater often discuss topics of sexuality, politics, society, race, religion, and gender. By most accounts, the organization is a society of creative trailblazers with a progressive view of America’s artistic frontier. Therefore, those interested in applying to the company should be open-minded, adventurous, and passionate about all forms of artistic expression.


Have some feedback for our editors? Contact Us