OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Jan. 17, 2011) - It is with great sadness that I learned of the death of Michael Langham.

Mr. Langham was a gifted theatre director who, over the course of his long career, worked with renowned theatre companies in England, the United States, and Canada. He influenced theatre throughout North America and England, directing well-reviewed productions on Broadway and at London's Old Vic Theatre and serving as director of the drama department at the Julliard School in New York.

In this country, his legacy is significant. As the second artistic director of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, he was responsible for developing it from a summer festival housed in a tent to a respected permanent theatre facility with a several-month-long season. In addition to shaping the Stratford Festival for eleven years, he helped found the Canada Council for the Arts and Canada's National Theatre School.

On behalf of Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Government of Canada, I offer my sincere condolences to the family and friends of Michael Langham.

Contact Information: Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
and Official Languages
Codie Taylor - Press Secretary
819-997-7788