Tony Hardin serves as the director of the School of Theatre and Dance. Passionate about theatre education since his very first undergraduate theatre class, Hardin holds a B.F.A. in design and technology from the University of Kentucky and an M.F.A. in scenic design from the University of Virginia. As a faculty member at the University of Kentucky, Hardin taught courses in scenic design, lighting design, scenic painting, introduction to theatre, and stage management. Additionally, Hardin designed the scenery and lighting for many of UK's productions and supervised the work of student designers. Prior to the University of Kentucky, Hardin was assistant professor at Longwood University in Virginia.
As a freelance scenic and lighting designer, Hardin's work has appeared in a variety of venues nationally and internationally such as Cincinnati Shakespeare Company in Ohio, Heritage Repertory Theatre in Virginia, Mount Washington Valley Theatre in New Hampshire, Greenbrier Valley Theatre in West Virginia, The Lexington Children’s Theatre in Kentucky, and Operafest Internacionale in Italy. Some of his favorite designs include Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Cabaret, Treasure Island, The Snow Queen, and The Neverending Story.
Hardin received the Marvin Simms Design Fellowship sponsored by the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival (KC/ACTF) in 2006 and as a result spent time with Broadway designers Ming Cho Lee and Constance Hoffman at the Kennedy Center for the Arts. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the United States Institute for Theatre Technology.