Samuel Buggeln is a Canadian theatre director and translator based in Ithaca, NY. He is the Artistic Director of The Cherry Arts, a theatre company focused on radically local, radically global, and formally innovative texts. From its base at the Cherry Artspace, the Cherry has produced English-language prèmieres of important recent plays from Argentina, France, Serbia, El Salvador, Québec, and Germany. Additionally, the Cherry has commissioned multiple innovative new works from Ithaca-based creators, some of which have been presented at the National Theater in London. Sam has been the director of most of these works.
Over a decade in NYC, Sam regularly developed new plays at the Lark Play Development Center, and is a long-time Artistic Associate with the Obie-winning New Ohio Theatre. Productions at the Ohio include Cressida Among the Greeks (Drama Desk-nomination) and Hater, his unconventional translation of Le Misanthrope, which has since been published and received two other productions. At the Ohio he also directed his adaptions of Queneau’s Le Vol D’Icare (The Flight of Icarus) and Duras’ Les Yeux Bleus Cheveux Noirs (Blue Eyes Black Hair), as well as the Off-Broadway premiere of Rum & Vodka by Conor McPherson and the world première of Bulgarian play The Eyes of Others.
Sam’s translation of the much-produced recent French play George Kaplan was produced at the Cherry, and his translations of Molière and Marivaux have been published in The Mercurian, as was his co-translation of Rafael Spregelburd’s Todo. He has co-translated five plays by Argentine playwright Santiago Loza, one of which (Winter Animals) appeared in the Global Queer Plays festival at the Arcola in London and was published in the Oberon Books anthology of the same name. As a director, he has developed translations of Bulgarian plays both in NYC (HotINK at the Lark) and Sofia (Red Room).
Other new works developed and directed in New York include Bedbugs!!!, a sci-fi musical starring Tony Award-winner Lena Hall (five NYMF jury awards) and Go-Go Kitty, GO! (Lucille Lortel Theater as part of FringeNYC — Best Play FringeFirst from among 200 shows). Other NYC work has appeared at the Atlantic, Rattlestick, Hypothetical, New York Theatre Workshop, Theater for the New City, HERE, Charas/El Bohio, Expanded Arts, and Clubbed Thumb.
Regional work includes more than twenty full productions at companies including the Kitchen Theatre (Ithaca), Capital Rep (Albany), Mason Street Warehouse (Michigan), StageWorks/Hudson, and most notably Portland Stage in Maine.
Buggeln has received grants from the Peg Sandtvoord Foundation, Dramatists’ Guild, Community Arts Partnership and NYSCA, is an alumnus of the Lincoln Center Directors’ Lab, and was a guest artist with New York Theatre Workshop’s summer residency at Dartmouth College. He has been a faculty guest director and instructor at Cornell University, Ithaca College, SUNY Albany, Hunter College, and the NYU-Tisch School of the Arts. He is a member of the international artists’ network The Fence, and the co-chair of the English Language Committee of the European new play exchange network Eurodram.