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Hartford, CT  06105

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HartBeat Ensemble seeks next generation to move the company forward as Artistic Director

Organization: HartBeat is an artist-led, artist-driven company dedicated to building community partnerships and helping to integrate the arts into our community’s civic agenda. HartBeat Ensemble is the only institute in Hartford that is consistently using theater to speak powerfully across different generations, races, populations and interest groups. Founded in 2001 by Steven Raider-Ginsburg, Julia B. Rosenblatt and Gregory R. Tate (1952-2012), HartBeat Ensemble creates and presents provocative theater that connects our community beyond traditional barriers of class, race, geography and gender.

 

As an ensemble of artist activists, we develop as well as present innovative productions based on critical civic issues. HartBeat offers audiences the chance to experience and respond to the work they have just seen through live performance and guided conversations. Our success lies in whether the piece actually led people to take an action toward greater justice or more freedom. Was each audience member able to look at the topic in a new light, from a slightly different perspective or with greater understanding?  

 

In 2013, HartBeat moved into the Carriage House Theater located on Farmington Avenue in Hartford. Our home provides an opportunity for HartBeat to produce a season of events that extends beyond our mainstage and education productions and to create a unique space for artists and the community to gather and experience live performance as well as engage in community conversations. Our goal is to offer our audiences consistently dynamic performances by HartBeat and other artists/companies and to provide artists with rehearsal and performance space at a highly subsidized rate. The Carriage House Theater is also home to HartBeat’s Youth Play Institute, a professional paid internship in acting, playwriting, theater design and stage management for young adults between the ages of 16 and 21 years old.

 

HartBeat is currently exploring a collaboration with the University of Connecticut-Hartford and the School of Fine Art’s Department of Dramatic Arts. Possible roles could include working with and teaching students, helping to integrate the arts into the curricular and co-curricular life of UConn-Hartford, and organizing arts-based experiences for students.

 

HartBeat is governed by a Board of Directors, which is committed to the organization’s mission and values. HartBeat’s current ensemble includes 7 members. HartBeat has an administrative staff of two, and a group of contracted professionals (i.e., artists, educators and technical professionals). The organization’s operating budget of approximately $360,000 and is supported by a combination of private foundations, government grants, workshop fees, performance revenue, ticket revenue, rental income, and individual donors.

 

Current Status:  HartBeat Ensemble is now transitioning from founding to second generation leadership and has been without a permanent Artistic Director for nearly two years. HartBeat seeks a “big thinker” to lead and reimagine what it is to be an ensemble theater company in Hartford and to continue to build upon the Ensemble’s long, celebrated history of creative, educational, community-inspired work.

 

HartBeat is looking for a experienced leader from the national artistic community to—in partnership with the Board and Managing Director—define, develop and deliver a bold and innovative season of events. This position will play a vital role in achieving the Board’s vision of the organization being a leading theater company in the state of Connecticut and beyond. The current moment offers an opportunity for an effective leader with a robust, inclusive and expansive artistic vision to take HartBeat into the next step in its journey. 

 

The Artistic Director of HartBeat Ensemble promotes the organization’s mission and core values.  Equally important to this role is fostering an environment that values, supports, and builds upon the experience and expertise of HartBeat’s ensemble members. The Artistic Director must be: a passionate advocate for the arts, social justice, and diversity, equity and inclusion; an effective external leader capable of increasing public awareness of HartBeat’s role in the community; an experienced fundraiser; and able to navigate successfully between and among the various constituencies – staff, ensemble members, artists, board, funders, the arts community, individual donors and the community at large.

 

HartBeat has a long history of receiving private and public funding but has continued to grapple with finding a balance between earned and contributed income. HartBeat continues to pursue a funding model that is well-structured and a practical framework for our organization--a balance of earned and contributed income. We are taking active steps to increase our earned income streams such as continuing to monetize the Carriage House Theater through a robust rental program as well as actively promoting our education programs in an effort to increase the number of engagements annually, thus increasing earned income and assisting with cash flow. Currently, 89% of HartBeat’s annual operating budget is contributed income and we rely heavily on grant funds. We are looking for an artistic leader who can fundraise and has a strong financial acumen.

 

HartBeat is currently exploring a collaboration with the University of Connecticut-Hartford and the School of Fine Art’s Department of Dramatic Arts. Possible roles could include working with and teaching students, helping to integrate the arts into the curricular and co-curricular life of the university, and organizing arts-based experiences for students.

 

About Hartford, Connecticut:  

Located in the Connecticut River Valley, Hartford has all the joys and all the struggles of any great city: it is home to storied cultural institutions, like the nation’s oldest art museum, but also to one of the poorest populations of any city in the country. It is culturally rich, with both established and new immigrant populations and strong cultural connections to Puerto Rico, the West Indies, and the American South, but residents benefit little from the tremendous prosperity of surrounding towns. Its art and music scenes are at once lively and intimate, characterized by webs of collaboration that feel almost familial, brilliant work across genres that finds outlets in living rooms and libraries as much as galleries and stages. With 125,000 residents in its 17 square miles, Hartford is the perfect mix of urban energy and close community feel, with a wealth of restaurants, clubs, galleries, and theaters. Learn more at http://www.ctvisit.com/

 

The ideal candidate will:

 

 Artistic:

  • Have substantial experience in the creation of original works.

  • Be passionate about using theater as an activist tool.

  • Have interest and experience in presenting the work of other artists/companies.

  • Develop framework to consistently employ and empower HartBeat ensemble members.

  • Act as lead producer for all HartBeat mainstage performances.

  • Curate a season of events that aligns with HartBeat’s mission and the community’s needs.

  • Build and manage artistic staff (actors, designers, technical production team, teaching artists, etc.)

  • Oversee the education programs, including curriculum development, staffing and training.

 

Executive Management:

  • Participate in the development and execution of a multi-year, organization-wide strategic planning process.

  •  Maintain and grow working relationships and collaborative arrangements with community groups, funders, arts organizations, local and state politicians, and other organizations to help achieve the goals and enhance visibility and awareness of HartBeat Ensemble and its impact.

  • Communicate and report to the Board of Directors on all artistic matters.

  • Participate in an ongoing Carriage Theater building renovation project that includes design and execution.

  • Contribute to the overall fundraising plan, with an emphasis on increasing individual donors and sponsorships and continued cultivation of foundation and donor relationships.

  • Work with the Managing Director to build an appropriate staff (artistic, administrative, technical) that is committed to the mission and goals of the organization.

 

Financial:

  • Strong experience understanding and managing the complexities of multiple projects and budgets of numerous programs, both those currently in existence and in developing new financial plans/budgets.

  • Work with Managing Director to create the annual operating budget, including, but not limited to: mainstage productions, education, special projects, human resources, facilities maintenance.

  • Assist in the development of financial, administrative and production reports.

 

Competitive candidates will possess:

  • A deep and passionate commitment to community-inspired work.

  • Strong creative programming abilities with proven ability to focus, prioritize, execute, collaborate, and delegate.

  • Ability to investigate/reimagine the traditional ensemble model for making theater. 

  • Experience in working with generative artists who create socially conscious work.

  • Proven ability to motivate, develop, and lead teams of people.

  • Willingness to live within commuting distance to Hartford and travel as needed.

  • Experience as theater maker, artist, arts administrator with a minimum of 7 years’ experience that may include education, mentorship and training.

  • Strong experience with fundraising and financial management.

  • Be the human face of the company and ensemble.

  • Master’s degree required, preferably a MFA, for planned future teaching partnership with major Hartford-based university.

 

Compensation:

The compensation package includes a $50,000 - $60,000 salary commensurate with experience including a benefits package. Generous vacation and personal leave policy. Funding for this position is secure for 12 months and continuation is contingent on fundraising. 

 

How to Apply:

Interested candidates should submit a resume and letter of interest due April 8, 2019.

In your letter of interest, please address:

 

Why you want to lead HartBeat Ensemble at this time?

How your qualifications and experience prepare you to take on this role? Please include detailed information concerning work experience, past successes, and leadership experience.

 

Submit applications to rhoda.cerritelli@hartbeatensemble.org. Applications will be acknowledged upon receipt. All submissions are confidential.

 

Finalist in person interviews will take place in Hartford, CT.

 

HartBeat Ensemble is an Equal Opportunity Employer. People of color, women, gender non-conforming individuals, LBGTQIA folks, people with disabilities and progressive visionaries are encouraged to apply.