Peace Center is a $23 million performing arts center and the cultural hub of downtown Greenville, SC. The organization seeks a Vice President, Programming to energize and activate the performance venues and other public spaces with events that enhance the mission of the organization.
DHR International has been exclusively retained to conduct a search for the Vice President, Programming for Peace Center.
POSITION TITLE: Vice President, Programming
REPORTING TO: President & CEO
LOCATION: Greenville, SC
THE COMPANY: Peace Center http://www.peacecenter.org/
The Peace Center is a major, nonprofit performing arts center serving a growing and sophisticated audience in Upstate South Carolina. With a 2,100-seat performance hall; a 400-seat theatre; a 1,350-seat amphitheater; a patrons’ lounge; and a variety of indoor and outdoor meeting, rehearsal, and event spaces, the Peace Center is the major performing arts attraction in the region. Built on a six-acre campus, with an energetic mix of leading-edge architecture and historic preservation, the campus is at the hub of Greenville’s nationally-recognized downtown.
The center is composed of the Peace Concert Hall (a fully-rigged 2,100-seat concert hall used for Broadway tours and single night events), the 400-seat Gunter Theatre, the 1,350-seat outdoor TD Stage, Graham Plaza, Genevieve’s lounge and cabaret, the Ramsaur Studio, and the Huguenot Loft. Each performance space is architecturally and acoustically remarkable. Classical, dance, jazz, country, bluegrass, folk, pop, and comedy artists, as well as top Broadway shows are presented on the Peace Center’s stages. Many of Greenville’s producing arts organizations are resident companies: Carolina Ballet Theatre, Greenville Chorale, Greenville County Youth Orchestras, Greenville Symphony Orchestra, International Ballet, and South Carolina Children’s Theater.
The Peace Center was founded in 1990. With an annual operating budget averaging $20 million, almost 85% of the revenue is earned from ticket sales and event rentals, and the organization consistently operates with a surplus. There are 54 full-time staff members employed by the Peace Center. The Peace Center is a member of the PACC and IPN.
The Peace Center is embarking on an ambitious, multi-year program of developing and activating new performance spaces. Buildings are being repurposed to create a welcoming, engaging music campus for the entire community. The expansion will activate non-traditional performance spaces to complement the existing concert hall, theatre, amphitheater, and lounge/cabaret. The Vice President, Programming will play a key role in planning and programming for these new spaces.
The Vice President, Programming will help expand the brand of the Peace Center by creating new and innovative programs, series, and single night events, etc. By the end of 2019 the Peace Center will have an entirely new venue to program (350-600 capacity) and in 2020 the 400-seat Gunter Theatre will have substantially more days and evenings available for presentations, including films and off-Broadway shows. The Vice President, Programming will fill these venues with high-quality, innovative programs.
With the recent hiring of a Vice President, Community Impact, the Peace Center has embarked on an ambitious series of engagement programs to enrich the lives of its stakeholders, and positively influence underserved community members.
SCOPE AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
The President & CEO (CEO) has been responsible for programming Peace Center presentations since the center’s inception. The Vice President, Programming, a new position, reports to the CEO. Together, the CEO and Vice President, Programming will energize and activate the performance venues and other public spaces with events that enhance the mission of the organization. The Vice President, Programming will be responsible for supplementing the established Broadway series and main-stage concert hall presentations with new series, programs, and events in the Concert Hall, Gunter Theatre, Genevieve’s, TD Stage, and the soon to be renovated Wyche Pavilion. The Vice President, Programming will also collaborate with the Vice President, Community Impact to create community engagement programs.
The Vice President, Programming will have the following specific responsibilities:
- Thoroughly understand the Peace Center – its history, culture, traditions, programs, performances, personalities, constituencies, and governance structure;
- Become familiar with the current regional market for performing arts events, including theatre, music, comedy, speaker, and film events;
- Seek out and engage segments of the community not currently served by Peace Center offerings, build on that opportunity and expand it;
- Develop a strong relationship with the CEO and senior management of the Peace Center;
- Understand the scope of Peace Center presentations and their impact on the community, as well as the financial implications of programs offered;
- Balance the commercial challenges inherent in any self-presentation against quality and taste – strive for the best of popular and serious entertainment while maintaining a positive bottom line in programming;
- Collaborate with the development and marketing departments to ensure that programs are sponsored when possible and contribute to the highest level of customer service and donor stewardship;
- Represent the Peace Center at national booking conferences to ensure that the best and most relevant acts are available to Peace Center’s regional audiences;
- Develop relationships and engage with local and regional artists, providing performance venues and assistance when appropriate;
- Create branded events that further distinguish the Peace Center to its audiences;
- Bring contacts and relationships with local and national artists and artist representatives to build on the Peace Center’s reputation as a must-perform venue;
- By understanding its current programming profile and history of success, book new programs and series in targeted spaces throughout the campus of the Peace Center;
- Operate with the understanding that the Peace Center self-promotes all events – the Vice President will work directly with artist agents and managers;
- Participate in long-range strategic planning for the Peace Center as part of the senior management team.
Candidates should have the following combination of experience and qualifications:
- Significant experience – ten years or more – of programming live events, ideally in both the nonprofit and commercial arenas;
- Demonstrated understanding of the finances of live presentations including complex fee arrangements, cost sharing, stage hands, and technical expenses, etc.;
- Taste, sophistication, a broad range of interest in the arts and entertainment, and knowledge of classical and popular artists and programs;
- An openness to learning about new cultures, traditions, and audiences;
- A respect for diversity in programming and audiences;
- A demonstrated ability to create series, programs, initiatives, and new combinations of events;
- An understanding of the role of artists, arts organizations, agents, managers, promoters, and venues in the supply chain of live arts presentations;
- A respect for and interest in the use of technology in the live arts.
PERSONAL / PROFESSIONAL ATTRIBUTES:
The successful candidate should be:
- An experienced, proven leader with the ability to project confidence, humility, emotional intelligence, high energy, and empathy. A hands-on engaging individual who also possesses the ability to see the entire picture of the organization, its mission, its position in the community, and in the arts world;
- An astute business executive with proven ability to balance the financial risks against artistic rewards of live presentations – a creative individual with an analytical business mind;
- An able negotiator with a reputation for fairness, for seeking long-term relationships rather than short-term profits, who is respected in the field;
- A mission-driven individual with a belief in, and commitment to, the mission of the Peace Center;
- Strong interest in and passion for the diverse communities of Greenville and the region;
- A good listener and strategist, comfortable receiving input from many sources and able to analyze and formulate disparate information into a sound, well-organized plan;
- Determined yet respectful of other’s concerns; someone with the flexibility and creativity needed to find alternative ways to reach funding objectives when barriers arise; a skilled negotiator who does not drive him/her selves or others into a corner;
- A charismatic communicator, able to build enthusiasm for the Peace Center, its performances and programs, and for innovative approaches that advance the reputation of Peace Center as a performing arts leader in the South East;
- A diligent worker with a high energy level; a “doer” with a willingness to work hands-on in developing and executing a variety of programming activities;
- Emotionally mature with a very good sense of humor and the flexibility and sensitivity to work with diverse personalities and situations.
Please send résumé to: