Blog Archives

Embracing the Unknown

I thought this would be a good excuse for a trio of posts with “unknown” in the title … because increasingly these days in the world it seems to be a contrast between an (induced?) fear of the unknown and embracing the challenges of the unknown.

I’m heading right into the unknown as it appears, consisting of a delicate balance between focusing on the nuts and bolts and processes of the last year of my MFA program … and looking ahead to The Unknown of what lies beyond that experience. As part of the challenge, I’ve begun regularly reviewing various job listings websites. The two most prominent ones for my theatre/performing arts fields are frequently updated, with the subscription-based one probably carrying a bit more cache than the open submission one.

Part of the challenge and opportunity of the unknown field of these decisions is simply within the art of embracing the challenge. That effort has become clear to me as two positions that I felt particularly interested in and well qualified for have appeared on either side of the USA. For me, seeing those jobs listed generated a positive reaction mixed with a bit of self-doubt … am I (are you) good enough for that position? That experience and choice? Going down that unknown road?

It might seem a little obvious to declare that it IS worth that effort and experience to apply, take the interview, step out of the comfort zone and so on … but I think part of this particular moment and process is embracing and striding forward into that unknown.

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Sigh/The Art of the Job Posting

While I am happy to have chosen to stay here in the Ann Arbor region at the present moment, I felt a pang of nostalgia for my more freelance/footloose oriented days after reading these two immediate vacancy job postings. (Direct references to companies have been removed.)

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A company not in Michigan is looking for a full-time, emerging arts administration professional to fill the role of Managing Director. The company is part of an extensive creative community nationwide, and has a strong presence in the (local) theater scene. Our year-round programs support both playwrights and the development of new plays, and we’re looking for someone who is interested in helping us to fulfill our mission.

The Managing Director will manage the production and administrative side of the organization, which includes:

– Producing company events.

– Managing office systems including database management, computer systems, communication systems, equipment contracts and insurance renewals.

– Managing the financial systems such as overseeing the bookkeeping, budget and cash flow

– Working to develop a marketing strategy and implementation.

– Hiring systems and data management involved with contracts, job descriptions and advertising.

The perfect candidate has experience in marketing and communications, finance and bookkeeping, grant writing and submissions and producing events, and is energetic, creative and extremely well organized. Personnel management would be a plus.

The company is looking to fill this position immediately. This is a full-time, salaried position.

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Another company not in Michigan seeks a full-time experienced production manager starting as soon as possible. The company produces six mainstage and three children’s theater shows a season. The company also manages a black box theater that is located in the same building.

Responsibilities:

General production management duties include, but are not limited to:

Manage and co-create the production budget.

Create all production calendars.

Hire all design and management teams.

Facilitate production meetings and coordinate communication between all design staff. Oversee and supervise all company technical staff as well as recruit volunteers.

Qualifications:

Strong leadership abilities to team build, listen, and manage people.

Must have an artistic eye. Design experience a plus.

Experience creating and managing budgets.

Ability to read and interpret technical theater drawings.

Excellent written and oral communication skills.

Strong work ethic. This position has a flexible schedule that will require nights and weekends.

Computer skills with knowledge of Google Docs.

A passion for theater and how it can enrich a community.

To apply, please send a resume and cover letter by email to the artistic director at the e-mail listed in this posting.