Stafford Arima is an international, award-winning theatre director who has worked for over 25 years in the entertainment industry. He was nominated for the prestigious Olivier Award for his direction of the West End premiere of the musical, Ragtime; and in 2015, Arima made history when he became the first Asian-Canadian to direct a musical on Broadway – Allegiance.
He is currently the Artistic Director of Theatre Calgary in Canada. Theatre Calgary is the largest theatre in Southern Alberta, and one of the most recognizable cultural institutions in Canada. Arima's current mission is to inspire audiences through ambitious programming created to ignite, local, national and international engagement.
Selected work includes: Altar Boyz (received the Best Musical Outer Critics Circle Award, was nominated for a Drama Desk as Outstanding Musical, and ran over 2,000 performances Off-Broadway); Carrie (Off-Broadway revival; nominated for 5 Drama Desk Awards including Outstanding Revival of a Musical and an Outer Critics nomination for Outstanding Revival of a Musical; MCC Theater); The Secret Garden (David Geffen Hall, Lincoln Center); The Tin Pan Alley Rag (nominated for an Outer Critics Circle Award as Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical, Roundabout Theatre Company); Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living In Paris (Stratford Festival); Bhangin' It (La Jolla Playhouse); Two Class Acts by A.R. Gurney (The Flea Theater); Candide (San Francisco Symphony); Red Velvet (The Old Globe); Saturday Night (The York Theatre Company, NYC); A Tribute to Sondheim (Boston Pops); Marry Me a Little (Cincinnati Playhouse); Guys and Dolls (Paper Mill Playhouse); Abyssinia (Goodspeed Musicals); and Billy Elliot, A Christmas Carol, and Mary and Max (Theatre Calgary).
Arima was the associate director for the Broadway productions of Seussical and A Class Act. He is a graduate of York University in Toronto, where he was the recipient of the Dean’s Prize for Excellence in Creative Work; is on the faculty of Broadway Dreams, and former adjunct and Granada Artist in Residence at the University of California, Davis. He is a proud member of SDC and CAEA.