Pursuing the retirement of Govt Producer Robb Hunt, and the departure of previous Inventive Director Jerry Dixon, Village Theatre is ushering in a new period with a shift to a twin management design helmed by new creative director Adam Immerwahr, a place that beforehand documented to the govt producer and that will now report to Village’s board, and the organization’s very first-at any time running director, Laura Lee. Both equally Lee and Immerwahr commenced doing work with the organization, regarded for creating a blend of common and new musicals as perfectly as for its youth training software, in July.
Immerwahr known as stepping in to lead the company pursuing Hunt’s 43 several years both equally an “extraordinary gift” and a obligation as he and Lee shepherd the organization’s up coming stage of growth.
“How do we function to make Village a far more equitable, humane, loving put for anyone to work — its staff members, its artists — as perfectly as for its viewers to go to,” Immerwahr mentioned. “How do we take the outstanding youth schooling plan, the new functions method and the do the job on the primary stage and raise it up to the future stage?”
Board president Jill Klinge, in a assertion, sees Immerwahr and Lee poised for achievement owing to their “unique power, expertise and eyesight,” Immerwahr’s “ability to imagine the basic musical theater canon in new and innovative ways” and Lee’s theater administration, advertising and monetary management competencies.
Most recently, Immerwahr served as creative director of Theater J in Washington, D.C., for in excess of six years, and prior to that, he was affiliate inventive director at the Tony-winning McCarter Theatre in Princeton, New Jersey. Lee’s additional than 30 several years of knowledge in finance, advertising and fundraising involves serving as running director of Seattle’s ArtsWest and the founder of her have sports creation organization, Generation Sporting activities.
Earlier this month, Immerwahr and Lee talked over what the new leadership model implies for the long run of Village Theatre and what audiences and artists can be expecting from the organization’s next phase. The adhering to conversation has been edited for length and clarity.
What are the dissimilarities in between acquiring that just one particular person at the prime versus possessing two people today sharing leadership?
Immerwahr: It is a fairly remarkable particular person who can be as great in the rehearsal space as they are examining the finances and making a marketing and advertising plan. Laura delivers a wealth of ordeals — I cannot even arrive shut to imagining all that she brings in the regions that she’s likely to be overseeing. Fundraising, internet marketing, functions, finance, the patron working experience, all of these. The dual leadership model will allow her to concentration and be a specialist even though I go and commit my time in the rehearsal home meeting with artists. With each other, we just take on joint management in the group and strategically of the group.
Laura, I’d really like to know, what is the most essential detail for Adam to know about the Seattle theater scene?
Lee: We are a close neighborhood. Even doing work at ArtsWest, there was not a competitors involving theaters. It was: How can we raise each other up? I got to see the spectrum of theater in Seattle. It’s a enormous spectrum and we really do want to raise each individual other up.
Adam, had been there any factors you figured out through your time in D.C., which also has its personal extremely distinct theater scene, that you are searching forward to bringing to Seattle and to Village?
Immerwahr: I was at just one of the bigger culturally certain theaters in the nation. I ran Theater J, which is the nation’s leading Jewish theater. From that vantage position, it seriously aided me understand the amazing electrical power of theater to be equally common and distinct, and the joy that comes with sharing tales of any particular team, of any certain people today, in a universal way.
Looking forward artistically, are we expecting to see programming equivalent to past seasons?
Immerwahr: Programming is a type of Venn diagram of what excites you as a producer and as an artist, what engages your viewers in what they want to see and what [stories] the artists of your community want to share. We’re not going to abandon executing massive, splashy musicals. But, we will start out to, I’m certain, marginally alter the flavor. I hope that the viewers starts to go on a journey that moves us about marginally to things that are at the centre of all of our interests. A whole lot of that for me is likely to be mastering the artistic local community and getting to know who’s acquired stories they’re dying to inform, who has assignments they’re dying to work on, and aiding them find a instant for that listed here at Village.
I would add that, what I’ve figured out in my journey with Village so significantly has been that the youth training system in this article is not only the heart and soul of Village, but in a lot of strategies, the heart and soul of this community. As you stroll by way of this building, you satisfy artist right after artist, workers member right after workers member, board member immediately after board member, who acquired their start off possibly in our youth education plan or their children have been in our youth training software.
Lee: The education [program] is a large cause that I applied for this position. As a mother of young children who grew up in arts education … the capabilities that they discovered in terms of just currently being able to show up in the world as a sort human being, all of that. It is been these types of a blessing that I can not visualize not possessing small children go through it and be able to be portion of a theater process, and Village is an awesome spot to do that function.