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Peter Hinton will step down as artistic director of the English theatre at the National Arts Centre this August after seven seasons at its head.

"The NAC is a unique gift to the people of Canada," Hinton said in a release. "It has been a privilege to be a part of its legacy and to build its meaningful place with artists and audiences across the country."

Since replacing Marti Maraden in 2005, Hinton's main accomplishment has been the creation of a Resident English Theatre Company, which draws acting talent from across the country to Ottawa. Though he will be leaving this summer, Hinton will select the members of the company and the playbill for the 2012-2013 season.

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Among his most notable achievements, Hinton programmed the NAC's first season of Canadian plays and, in 2007, partnered with the Royal Shakespeare Company for the first time on the world premiere of Margaret Atwood's The Penelopiad.

Leadership at the NAC's French theatre is also changing next season with Brigitte Haentjens replacing Wajdi Mouawad as artistic director.

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Theatre critic

J. Kelly Nestruck is The Globe's theatre critic. More

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