The Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Canada -- one of the premiere repertory theater companies in the world -- is undergoing a name change by removing the "Shakespeare" from its title. The company, which will be known simply as the Stratford Festival, announced the change Thursday and said its new name takes effect immediately.
Earlier this year, the festival named Antoni Cimolino as its new artistic director, taking over from Des McAnuff. Cimolino, who had served as general director of the company since 2006, assumed his new role Thursday.
The festival was called the Stratford Festival for many years before adding the "Shakespeare" in 2008.
The company continues to produce Shakespeare plays, and will perform "Romeo and Juliet," "The Merchant of Venice," "Measure for Measure" and "Othello" in the 2013 season.
Cimolino said in a statement that the name "is simple and direct, it resonates with people and it carries our legacy of quality and success."
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