Theatre for a New Audience (TFANA) seeks an experienced, detail-oriented theatre professional to serve as its General Manager (GM), a key member of the senior management team.
The GM reports to, is a trusted confidant of and works closely with Jeffrey Horowitz, TFANA’s Founding Artistic Director (FAD).
Horowitz, who is also the Theatre’s Chief Executive Officer, is a hands-on producer who has final responsibility for managing TFANA; implementing its mission; and approving season programming and projects. Horowitz’s duties include: cultivating, developing and sustaining artistic relationships, projects and productions; developing TFANA budgets; fundraising, oversight of marketing communications and advertising; supporting the development of new programs; supporting TFANA’s humanities and education programs; supporting the evolution of TFANA’s Board; establishing DEI policies; and implementing a five-year Strategic Plan created with Michael M. Kaiser, Chair, DeVos Institute of Arts Management and President Emeritus, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Dorothy Ryan, TFANA’s Managing Director (MD) since 2003, reports to and works closely with Horowitz. Ryan oversees the annual institutional budget, TFANA financial protocols, Board relations, annual and capital fundraising, human resources, and the evolution of TFANA’s Board. In collaboration with Horowitz, she is responsible for establishing DEI policies and implementing the Kaiser Strategic Plan
Founded in 1979 by Jeffrey Horowitz, TFANA is a NYC-based Off-Broadway theatre operating on a LORT C contract. It produces Shakespeare alongside classic and contemporary plays with some of today’s most exciting artists. The Theatre recently celebrated its 40th Anniversary.
With Shakespeare as its supreme guide, TFANA mounts four to five productions each season exploring the endless forms of theatre from around the world and creating a dialogue between Shakespeare and a range of plays from past and present about our world. Each season, an audience of 30,000 to 50,000 patrons attend TFANA’s productions. In addition to its productions, the Theatre engages its community through free Humanities programs for general audiences, extensive creative development opportunities for artists, and the largest in-depth arts in education programs to introduce Shakespeare and classic drama to New York City Public School students across the five boroughs. TFANA is committed to building a vibrant and diverse young audience through its New Deal program, which offers $20 tickets to patrons aged thirty or under and all full-time students. One out of every six tickets sold is now a New Deal ticket.
Since its founding, the Theatre has produced thirty-three of Shakespeare’s 38 plays. It has grown to become the second largest theatre dedicated to Shakespeare in New York and the sixth largest in the United States. It has earned an international reputation for innovation and excellence through its acclaimed productions that have received numerous nominations and awards, including the Drama Desk, Obie, Drama League, Audelco, Outer Critics Circle, Lucille Lortel, and the Tony.
In 2001, TFANA became the first American theatre company invited to perform Shakespeare at the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) in Stratford-upon-Avon. In addition to an ongoing relationship with the RSC, other partnerships include the Young Vic, American Repertory Theater, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Brooklyn Academy of Music, C.I.C.T./Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord, Houston’s Alley Theatre, New York City Players, New York Theatre Workshop, The Public Theater, Shakespeare’s Globe in London, The Skirball Center and Soho Rep.
TFANA has built associations with some of the world’s finest artists including César Alvarez, Arin Arbus, Sarah Benson, Cicely Berry, Lileana Blain-Cruz, Michael Boyd, Peter Brook, Karin Coonrod, Justin Ellington, Simon Godwin, Elliot Goldenthal, Andre Gregory, Peter Hall, Riccardo Hernandez, Trevor Nunn, Bartlett Sher, Julie Taymor, Awoye Timpo, Darko Tresnjak, Frederick Wiseman, Robert Woodruff and Evan Yionoulis; has produced the work of classical authors such as Shakespeare, Euripides, Ibsen, Moliere and Strindberg; and contemporary playwrights Harley Granville-Barker, Samuel Beckett, Edward Bond, Howard Brenton, Will Eno, Maria Irene Fornes, David Greig, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Adrienne Kennedy, Richard Nelson, Suzan-Lori Parks, Wallace Shawn, and Jackie Sibblies Drury; and distinguished actors such as F. Murray Abraham, Christian Camargo, Bill Camp, Kathryn Hunter, Kecia Lewis, Elizabeth Marvel, Kristine Nielsen, Michael Pennington, Juliet Rylance, Mark Rylance, Michael Shannon, Paul Sparks, John Douglas Thompson, John Turturro and Dianne Wiest and Mary Wiseman.
In 2013, after three decades of itinerancy, the Theatre opened Polonsky Shakespeare Center (PSC) its first permanent home in the Brooklyn Cultural District. Designed by architect Hugh Hardy, PSC is the first theatre built in New York City for Shakespeare and classic drama since the 1965 Vivian Beaumont Theatre at Lincoln Center. The PSC’s Samuel H. Scripps Mainstage is a unique performing space that allows artists to arrange the stage and seating in different configurations (seating capacity ranges from 99 to 350). The 50-seat Theodore C. Rogers Studio may be used for performances and rehearsals. At PSC, the Theatre has produced a range of Shakespeare, classics, contemporary American, New York and World premieres and played to a diverse audience of more than 220,000. See www.tfana.org and click on About TFANA and Production History for plays produced by TFANA.
Theatre for a New Audience is home for Shakespeare and other new plays. TFANA is dedicated to the ongoing search for a living, human theatre and forging an immediate, direct exchange with an audience that is always new and different from yesterday. With Shakespeare as its supreme guide, TFANA explores the ever-changing forms of world theatre and builds a dialogue, spanning centuries between the language and ideas of Shakespeare and diverse authors, past and present. TFANA brings the works of Shakespeare alive now; creates theatrical experiences beyond the ordinary; builds long-term associations with artists from around the world; and supports the development of new plays, translations, productions and artists through residences, workshops, and commissions. In the spirit of Elizabethan theatre, TFANA is devoted to economic access; plays to an audience of all ages and backgrounds; and promotes a vibrant exchange of ideas through its humanities and education programs.
To advance its mission and values, Theatre for a New Audience:
- produces Shakespeare side-by-side with other plays of classic stature and major contemporary plays, creating a dialogue over centuries between Shakespeare and other authors about our contemporary world.
- builds long-term associations with artists and offers programs for their growth and ongoing development.
- promotes the humanities by presenting dynamic discussions with leading intellects in a variety of fields in conjunction to the plays we present.
- plays for wide-ranging audiences—from connoisseurs of diverse repertory to young people who are seeing groundbreaking productions for the first time.
- promotes access for diverse audiences by offering economically priced tickets.
- provides rich arts-in-education programs, including teacher training and the largest arts-in-education program to introduce Shakespeare to New York City Public School students.
- uses its facilities and intellectual resources to serve the local artistic, educational, and social communities where the Theatre operates, and contributes to the international theatre community through touring, artistic exchanges, and partnerships.
Jeffrey Horowitz, Founding Artistic Director, created TFANA in 1979. He began his career in theatre as an actor and appeared on Broadway, Off-Broadway and in regional theatre. Horowitz has served on the Panel of the New York State Council on the Arts, on the Board of Directors of Theatre Communications Group, the Advisory Board of the Shakespeare Society and Artistic Directorate of London’s Globe Theatre. Awards: 2003 John Houseman Award – The Acting Company; 2004 Gaudium Award – Breukelein Institute; 2014 Alfred Drake Award – Brooklyn College; 2019 Obie Lifetime Achievement Award. More on Mr. Horowitz may be found at https://www.tfana.org/about/founder.
Dorothy Ryan, Managing Director, joined TFANA in 2003. As Managing Director, she is the management leader of the organization, and oversees the areas of Finance, Development, Board Relations, and the Capital Campaign including managing TFANA’s capital project to build PSC which opened in 2013. From 2000-2008, Dorothy served as Visiting Assistant Professor for the Pratt Institute’s Art and Cultural Management Program, teaching courses in fundraising.
Before joining TFANA, Dorothy spent the previous ten years devoted to fundraising for the 92nd Street Y and the Brooklyn Museum. After graduating from Brown University with a music degree, she began her career in the arts with the Hillyer International, a classical music management that has also toured international attractions. She has also served as Company Manager for Chautauqua Opera, Managing Director for the Opera Ensemble of New York, and General Manager of Eugene Opera.
For more information about TFANA, visit https://www.tfana.org/
OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES
As part of the Brooklyn Cultural District, TFANA is part of a larger, deeply vibrant arts sector which also includes BAM, BRIC Arts Media, Mark Morris Dance Group, 651 Arts, MoCADA and Urban Glass. Extending beyond the Cultural District, TFANA actively engages and collaborates with more than fifty cultural organizations belonging to the Downtown Brooklyn Arts Alliance. TFANA’s opportunities are many:
- Continuing to offer mainstage programming at the highest artistic and production quality.
- Expanding TFANA’s reach through co-productions, transfers, presentations, and productive collaboration with theatre (and other performing arts disciplines) in New York and nationally.
- Engaging in a comprehensive Anti-Racism and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion process
- Developing even deeper community relationships through its education and engagement work both in and outside of its building.
- Using the talents, skills, and connections of current Board members and advocates to secure more contributed revenue.
- Finding ways to fully use its facilities in ways that will deepen relationships in Brooklyn and benefit TFANA.
- Supporting the implementation of a five-year Sustainability and Management Plan created with Michael Kaiser, Chairman of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management, as well as a Capital Campaign — one of whose goals is the completion of fit-out of new space adjacent to PSC, enabling TFANA to move its administrative offices from Manhattan’s West Village.
Along with these opportunities, there are challenges that TFANA is currently addressing:
- Thriving in what is now a highly competitive performing arts environment in Brooklyn and the greater New York area.
- Solving the fiscal challenges created through its occupancy in Polonsky Shakespeare Center, including a structural operating deficit (currently bridged by a designated “spend-down” fund).
- Building both infrastructure and internal culture that will support its artistic imperatives.
- Instituting organizational procedures that integrate information flow between departments (located in separate facilities, 45 minutes apart), with the goal of improving productivity and efficiency; and
- Ramping up production following the pandemic, including both production planning and facility readiness to create a safe environment for artists, audiences, and employees.
POSITION AND RESPONSIBILITIES
The GM is a key member of the senior management team, reporting to the Founding Artistic Director (FAD), joining Managing Director and Marketing Director, who also report to the FAD. The General Manager will be fundamental to the artistic and production functions of TFANA, all production and facilities personnel report to the GM.
The GM oversees a team of eight 1) FT Associate/Producer; 2) seasonal Company Manager; 3) FT Theatre Manager; 4) seasonal Box Office Manager 5) FT Facilities Manager; 6) FT Associate Facilities Manager; 7) FT Production Manager; 8) FT or seasonal (TBD) Technical Director.
The GM will have high-level negotiation and financial forecasting skills, a knowledge of collectively bargained agreements between the League of Resident Theatres (LORT) and the theatrical unions (Actors’ Equity Association, Society for Stage Directors and Choreographers, and United Scenic Artists); and experience producing and developing large and small- scale works.
The GM will work with individuals of all cultural backgrounds — a multi-tasker, doer and problem-solver of the day-to-day issues of producing in one of the most competitive arts environments in the world.
Now that TFANA has returned to live performance, the GM will be deeply engaged in realizing the Kaiser Implementation Plan and addressing the structural deficit. The GM will marshal resources and people with a sense of drive and diplomacy and think ahead to create solutions before problems arise. Producing Shakespeare alongside a range of bold, international repertoire; building relationships with theatres both national and international; expanding access for audiences of all backgrounds; creating a sustainable TFANA at PSC are goals the GM will hold dear and support in TFANA’s work with diverse artists, staff and Board.
The overarching responsibilities of the GM are:
- Work with the FAD and the senior team to set and achieve goals for the organization following strategic priorities as set by the FAD.
- Serve as the primary liaison between the FAD and artistic and production functions.
- Drive TFANA’s cycle of programmatic planning in coordination with the FAD.
- Negotiate agreements with artists, designers, directors, and collective bargaining units.
- Manage the organizational budgeting process in collaboration with the Managing Director including its creation, tracking, and forecasting.
- Cultivate, develop, mentor, and retain top-performing staff.
- Provide support to the development and marketing functions of TFANA.
- Oversee front-of-house, operations, and backstage needs of Polonsky Shakespeare Center.
Interested candidates should possess the following qualifications, skills, and traits:
- A deep well of experience in production, including co-productions, presentations, and collaborations.
- A track record of managing a high-producing team with the ability to lead as a “servant leader,” deriving deep satisfaction from achieving the best work of others.
- Exceptionally strong financial management skills.
- Experience negotiating contracts and familiarity with LORT, as well as AEA, SDC and USA contracts and procedures.
- High-level communication skills.
- Exceptionally strong computer skills.
- A strong commitment to Anti-Racist theatre practices, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
- Exemplary skill in managing multiple complex projects, both short-term and long-term, simultaneously.
- Patience and ability to prioritize the organization’s needs.
- Tenacity, grit, and stamina.
- Good humor, a positive attitude, and an even-keeled temperament.
- An overall skill set that will complement those of others in a high-functioning organization.
The salary range for this role begins at $130,000, commensurate with organizations of a comparable size and scope of activities. Benefits offered include medical, vision, Life and long-term disability insurance, paid time off, Employee Assistance Program and voluntary pre-tax programs for retirement (403[b], Transit and FSA).
Applicants for this position should send full cover letter and chronological resume (combined into a single PDF) to firstname.lastname@example.org with “General Manager” in the subject line.
Theatre for a New Audience is committed to attracting, hiring, and retaining employees who reflect the cultural diversity of its community. The Theatre maintains that every employee has the right to work in a respectful environment that is free from discrimination, consistent with the organization’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and respect. This commitment extends to all aspects of the employment relationship.