Stephen Agosto Appointed Director of Theater

New Director Takes Over for Joe Cabral After Three Decades of Leadership

Walnut Hill School for the Arts today announces the appointment of Stephen Agosto as its next Director of Theater beginning in August 2024. After a monthslong process that saw scores of applicants, Agosto was the unanimous top choice for the role among Walnut Hill’s Search Committee, administration, Theater faculty, and students. He will take over for outgoing Director Joe Cabral, who has led the Theater Department at Walnut Hill for 31 years.

“It is a true honor to be asked to carry on the incredible tradition of excellence established by Joe Cabral and the Walnut Hill faculty,” remarks Agosto. “I feel a great responsibility to continue to provide practical, ‘real world’ training while utilizing my knowledge of the college theater admissions process to support these talented young people in their future endeavors.”

“I am so thrilled to have Stephen join us at Walnut Hill,” says Head of School Eric Barber. “Out of the 140 applicants vying for this position, Stephen came away as our top choice, showcasing his extensive experience in theater education and his unique ability to create a magical classroom environment of our students. Stephen’s arrival at Walnut Hill ignites an exciting new chapter for our Theater program.”

Agosto has served in administrative, teaching, and artistic roles at schools and theaters around the country and internationally. He comes to Walnut Hill most recently from Goodspeed Musicals in Connecticut, where he has been a member of the company’s TONY Award-winning artistic team, overseeing the incubation of top musical theater productions for a launch onto Broadway. Prior to that, he held roles as Senior Director of Artistic Engagement, Associate Director of Education, and Conservatory Director at Paper Mill Playhouse in New Jersey. While at Paper Mill Playhouse, he also served as a Lecturer at Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts in New Jersey and at Fordham University in New York.

He is the author of the Musical Theater Common Prescreen, a universal set of guidelines for college entrance that now boasts over 65 participating musical theater programs and impacts thousands of students annually. Agosto’s work on the Prescreen is grounded in access and equity for all students to a life-changing theater education.

Agosto also served as Director of Theater at Talent Unlimited High School, a performing arts magnet school in Manhattan, where he and his students were honored as Circle in the Square “Teens on Broadway”, recipients of “Special Honors” from the Gershwin Theatre Awards, and recipients of the Shubert Organization High School Theatre Award (Top Honors). He has also held guest artist and instructor positions at venerable schools such as the Boston Conservatory, American Conservatory Theater, the Hartt School of Music, Ithaca College, and many others.

Agosto received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting from The Theatre School at DePaul University and a Graduate Certificate from the Neighborhood Playhouse School of Theatre.

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