POSITION TITLE: Producing Artistic Director
REPORTS TO: Executive Director
CLASSIFICATION: Full-time/Exempt with Benefits
SALARY: Dependent on Qualifications
APPLICATION DEADLINE: 5 p.m. CST on July 31, 2015
Bloomington Theatre and Art Center (BTAC), which will change its name to Artistry on July 1, 2015, is an independent, multidisciplinary 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in the municipally-owned Bloomington Center for the Arts. As an anchor tenant, we share the Center’s two theaters and certain other facilities with six smaller performing arts organizations. Artistry’s total annual operating budget is slightly over $2 million, roughly half of which comprises our theater program budget.
Artistry has grown by 50% since 2010, serves more than 70,000 people per year, and is well-positioned for continued expansion. We produce theater and art exhibitions of exceptional quality and offer a rapidly-growing arts education program serving people of all ages and abilities. With major funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, we recently launched a long-term partnership with the City of Bloomington to engage artists, designers, and other creative people in public art and creative placemaking work. We are governed by a 13-member board of directors, and our management team includes Executive Director Andrea Specht, Director of Visual Arts Rachel Daly, Director of Education Leah Hughes, Director of Development Debra deNoyelles, and the incoming Producing Artistic Director.
BTAC was the product of a 2009 merger between the Bloomington Art Center, founded in 1976, and Bloomington Civic Theatre, founded in 1955. When we rebrand to Artistry on July 1, we will conduct all of our programming under our new name. Our theater program has grown significantly in size and artistic quality over the decades and has undergone rapid professionalization in the past 10 years. We attract some of the Twin Cities’ most respected directors, choreographers, and designers and compensate them at a level customary in the Twin Cities’ professional theater market. Actors receive a modest stipend that has increased significantly over the past five years – a trend we aspire to continue. In 2013, we became eligible for the Ivey Awards and in the same year, Michael Matthew Ferrell won an Ivey for his choreography in our production of Singin’ in the Rain.
Artistry currently produces eight shows per season in two theaters: four musicals with a critically-acclaimed pit orchestra in the 366-seat Schneider Theater, and four plays in the 115-seat Black Box Theater. Ticket sales reached a recent high point in 2013-2014. In that season, we sold 35,500 tickets, earned $857,118 in ticket sales revenue, and had roughly 3,780 season subscribers. We draw a regional theater audience and artist base. Roughly 28% of our ticket holders live in Bloomington, 23% in adjacent suburbs, and 15% in the core cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. The remaining 34% live in other seven-country metro communities and greater Minnesota. Forty-three percent of the artists who work with us live in Minneapolis and St. Paul, 22% in Bloomington and surrounding suburbs, and the remaining 35% in other seven-country metro communities.
In connection with this hiring process, Artistry is changing the title of our theater program director from Director of Performing Arts to Producing Artistic Director (PAD) to reflect significant changes in the position. The PAD will direct two shows during the season and delegate more aspects of production management to our full-time Production Manager/Technical Director. She or he will also have greater responsibility for community outreach, collaborating with colleagues inside and outside the organization, and developing a more diverse audience that encompasses youth and families.
I. Purpose of Position
As a key member of Artistry’s management team, the Producing Artistic Director leads the ongoing development and implementation of our theater program, growing and diversifying our audience and our community of participating artists.
- Artistic Leadership
- Appoint and facilitate advisory board(s) to invite key stakeholders’ input on show selection and other elements of theater program development.
- Select our annual Schneider Theater/Black Box Theater season.
- Direct two shows per season, select visiting show directors, and select other production team members in consultation with the directors and the Production Manager/Technical Director.
- Ensure that our productions reflect artistic excellence.
- Explore and experiment with a broad range of strategies to grow and diversify our audience and our community of participating artists. Prospective strategies may include, among others, producing new works, co-producing with other theater organizations, touring our productions locally and regionally, and producing on a smaller scale at the Bloomington Center for the Arts and in a range of offsite settings.
- Lead the development of a children’s theater education program, in partnership with the Director of Education.
- Collaborate with Artistry colleagues and other organizations to make high quality theater experiences accessible to nontraditional and underserved audiences, to advance artist and audience education, and to create ever-deeper and more engaging relationships between the organization and the communities we serve.
- Develop and reinforce a welcoming, inclusive, and professional culture within the theater program for all Artistry employees, production team members, artists, and audiences.
- Serve as the primary liaison between Artistry and our Twin Cities’ theater community: build a strong network of local theater colleagues; cultivate an ongoing awareness of the challenges and opportunities facing the theater community and our peers; and help educate Artistry’s management team and board about strategic issues relevant to our theater program.
- Program Management
- Supervise the Production Manager/Technical Director (PM/TD) and part-time Production Coordinator.
- Develop and manage the annual theater program budget with input from the PM/TD and others.
- Secure production rights and negotiate and administer independent contractor agreements.
- Ensure that production team members have the information and support they need, in partnership with the PM/TD.
- Lead ongoing program evaluation.
- Monitor and analyze ticket sales trends, set sales goals, and set ticket prices to support audience development goals and other organization-wide priorities.
- Lead the development and implementation of theater marketing plans, working closely with Artistry colleagues.
- Support fund development efforts by providing content for grant applications, accompanying development staff on donor meetings and site visits, and participating in public speaking opportunities as requested.
- Serve as a resource for the staff responsible for recruiting and managing backstage, front-of-house, and other volunteers who serve in our theater program.
- Education and Experience
- Bachelor’s degree in theater/drama or equivalent experience; advanced degree desirable.
- Minimum five years’ experience producing theater productions of a size and quality comparable to Artistry productions; producing experience in multiple organizations/programs preferred.
- Demonstrated success directing productions that achieve high artistic standards and meet financial goals.
- Experience producing and/or directing children’s theater preferred.
Please note that the skills and attributes listed below are representative in scope and may change from time to time as the requirements of the job evolve.
- Exceptional written and oral communication skills.
- Exceptional planning, time-management, and project-management skills.
- Budgeting and financial management skills.
- Negotiation, problem-solving, and conflict-resolution skills.
- Ability to motivate and manage self and others.
- Decision-making and prioritizing skills.
- Mentoring, coaching, and teaching skills.
- Marketing, public relations, and community relations skills.
- Ability to communicate and collaborate with people of different ages and backgrounds and people with different communication/work styles.
- Ability to think strategically and also attend to details.
- Attributes This position requires a person who has:
- Passion for theater and for making theater experiences available to people from all backgrounds.
- Commitment to artistic excellence.
- Interest in Artistry’s other program areas and opportunities to collaborate across artistic disciplines.
- Patience, flexibility, and a collaborative nature.
- Excellent judgment, maturity, and professionalism.
- High energy, enthusiasm, and a positive, “can-do” attitude.
- High risk tolerance and an entrepreneurial spirit.
- Strong work ethic.
- Sense of humor and an ability to keep challenges and setbacks in perspective.
- Creativity and resourcefulness.
- Compassion and high emotional intelligence.
IV. To Apply
Applications will be accepted starting July 1 and are due by 5 p.m. CST on Friday, July 31. Please email the following materials as PDF attachments to firstname.lastname@example.org:
- Cover letter addressed to Executive Director Andrea Specht, stating interest and summarizing qualifications relevant to the duties and responsibilities listed above.
- Resume or curriculum vitae.
- Relevant professional writing sample, e.g., proposal or planning document.
- Names and contact information for three professional references.
- Salary requirements and/or recent compensation history.
Artistry is an Equal Opportunity Employer. To receive this information in an alternative format, please contact our office at 952 563-8575.