Diane Quinn, who was named executive director of the American Repertory Theater on Monday, says she looks forward to continuing the A.R.T.'s mission to expand the boundaries of theater.
"If there is something that is happening in the world, we can speak to that because it is part of the mandate," Quinn told WBUR's Newscast Unit.
Quinn is coming to Boston after spending 11 years with Cirque du Soleil, currently leading their creative and artistic operations.
"There's a lot of similarities that may not be obvious at first blush," Quinn said. "The A.R.T. has really been able to work with artists from around the world and to create work in new ways, and I definitely believe that that is part of what Cirque has been doing."
On joining acclaimed artistic director Diane Paulus, Quinn says she wants to build on her success and continue to put on relevant and intimate performances.
Quinn says she is glad to be back in theater, what she calls her "first love."
"What I like is the opportunity to sit down with a piece of work and see that process through," Quinn said. "...Theater has been built in such a way that you feel, even though maybe you're part of a greater audience, it touches you. And for me, that was also important, to get back to an environment where you feel very close to your actors as well as to your audience."
She'll join the A.R.T. officially on Dec. 1.