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The Digest of Arts, Culture and Ideas
Updated: 18 min 9 sec ago

James Garner, Star Of Stage And Screen, Dead At 86

July 20, 2014 - 11:00am

Garner, star of ‘Maverick’ and ‘The Rockford Files,’ “was a genuine star but as an actor something of a paradox: a lantern-jawed, brawny athlete whose physical appeal was both enhanced and undercut by a disarming wit.”

Director of Annual Giving and Foundation Relations- Music Academy of the West

July 20, 2014 - 12:11am

The Director of Annual Giving and Foundation Relations (DAFR) oversees the strategic development and implementation of the Music Academy of the West’s robust grants program and all direct-mail campaigns. This includes management of solicitation strategies, required reporting, site visits, and periodic updates to deepen funder relationships. The DAFR oversees a portfolio of existing foundation relationships while identifying and developing strategies to approach new foundations.

Candidate Profile
The ideal candidate is a relationship-driven professional in the performing arts industry with 5+ years’ experience identifying, soliciting, and developing relationships with foundations and individuals and has a proven track record of reaching or exceeding financial goals. The candidate will have superb written/verbal, management, organizational, and supervisory skills; experience in developing and managing budgets, working with volunteers, and with creating and executing electronic fundraising campaigns.

The successful candidate will have very strong social and interpersonal skills and will excel in a collaborative, highly communicative team environment. S/he will be a person of high energy, integrity and ethical standards with a deep interest in arts education and performance as well as a desire to be part of the Santa Barbara community.

Reporting Structure
The DAFR reports to the Vice President of Institutional Advancement (VPIA) and is a senior member of the Music Academy’s Institutional Advancement team.

Direct Responsibilities

 Oversee a comprehensive foundation relations program, including grant writing, personal visits, and management of on-site visits with the following objectives:
o Solicit and manage an existing portfolio of 30+ foundation relationships with a total current revenue goal of $770,000 in annual operational support.
o Drive an ongoing strategy to increase existing operational foundation revenue and develop new foundation relationships with the goal to increase revenue to between $1 -
$1.5 million within three years.
o Prospect and solicit new foundations to support the Music Academy’s ongoing multi- million dollar capital campaign and specific endowment fundraising objectives

 Oversee the Music Academy’s year-round direct-mail campaign calendar.

 Collaborate with the Institutional Advancement team to develop strategies to increase existing donor giving, acquire new donors, track and re-engage lapsed donors, and maximize donor retention.
o Including the development of a thoughtful and effective donor benefits program to help in achieving these goals.

 Work closely with Music Academy volunteers to identify and engage new foundation or individual relationships that may have the affinity to become involved with the Music Academy.

 Work closely with Database Manager to request segmented donor lists, track trends related to annual giving and maintain accurate donor records.

 Develop and manage segments of the Advancement department budget specific to foundation relations and annual giving.

 Manages projects and/or completes tasks as assigned by the VPIA.

Application Process and Compensation
Interested candidates should email a letter of interest and current resume no later than August 8, 2014 to: No phone calls please.

The DAFR’s salary will be competitive with other organizations of comparable size and stature. The compensation package includes a comprehensive benefits package.

The Music Academy of the West is an equal opportunity employer.

Music Academy of the West
Among the nation’s preeminent summer festivals, the Music Academy of the West is a full-scholarship institution. Academy Fellows, Faculty, and Guest Artists are presented in more than 200 events and performances annually. A uniquely supportive environment offers Fellows and the community access to innovative learning experiences such as a String Leadership program, psychological insight about performance technique, masterclasses with distinguished teachers, and opera and orchestral training. The Music Academy has entered into an unprecedented four-year partnership with the world-renowned New York Philharmonic that offers opportunities for Fellows to train and perform with their professional counterparts during the summer months and beyond. Academy alumni are members of major symphony orchestras, chamber orchestras, ensembles, opera companies, and university and conservatory faculties, and arts administrators, and have become prominent solo artists.

For more information, please visit the Music Academy’s website at

Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre Seeks Managing Director

July 19, 2014 - 7:42pm

The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre (The Gamm), an award-winning, regionally acclaimed professional company in Pawtucket, RI, seeks a Managing Director to oversee its administration and $1.3 million annual budget. The Managing Director will collaborate with the Artistic Director to implement the company’s mission and vision as it enters its 30th season. The Gamm produces a 5-play subscription season in its 135-seat space. It also administers a growing multi-faceted education program serving its home community, with outreach to other parts of RI/Southern New England. The Gamm operates under an SPT/NEAT(New England Area Theatre) contract with Actors’ Equity Association (AEA). With close to 2,500 subscribers, the theater is in the early stages of developing its next major strategic initiative for its future. The Managing Director is the administrative leader, reporting to the Board of Directors. S/he oversees all administrative staff, develops and implements the annual budget, monitors cash flow, and collaborates closely in all development and fundraising efforts. The ideal candidate will have significant leadership/management experience in not-for-profit theater/arts. Salary is competitive. Qualified candidates should send a cover letter and CV Serious inquiries are requested by August 1, 2014. For a full job description visit (Get Involved tab).

Working under the direction of the Board of Directors and in coordination with the Artistic Director, the Managing Director is responsible for the administrative and financial components of the organization.

Major responsibilities include:

Board Relations
• Keep the President and Executive Committee current on all Gamm issues
• Prepare agendas, consent agendas, reminders for Board meetings
• Serve as staff liaison to major Board committees
• Attend as many committee meetings as possible
• Work with President and Chair of the Committee on Directors to develop Board and other policies, and to recruit and evaluate Board members
• Develop and implement Board orientation program and materials

• Hire and oversee administrative staff of marketing, development, and finance departments
• Implement, monitor and update administrative and human resources policies, as required
• Develop and monitor annual budget
• Oversee current and future facilities planning and use
• Initiate, develop and monitor long-range strategic plan
• Negotiate and monitor personnel and vendor contracts 
• Along the Artistic Director, participate in negotiating Actors’ Equity Association contract as Gamm representative to NEAT (New England Area Theatre), our collective bargaining group

Work with Treasurer and Finance Committee on financial policies and issues
Work closely with staff accountant and outside auditors
Monitor bank accounts, cash flow, A/P and A/R, monthly financial reports

Review and oversee all major development initiatives, including the annual event 
In collaboration with Development Director and the Development Committee:
• Determine annual revenue goals
• Initiate and undertake cultivation and solicitation efforts
• Foster and maintain relationships with significant donors (foundations, corporations, individuals)
Work with Development Committee and the entire Board to increase their involvement in fundraising

Review and oversee subscription campaign and all other major marketing initiatives
In collaboration with Marketing Director and appropriate Board committees:
• Set ticket prices and determine revenue goals
• Review and approve ticketing policies
• Review and approve advertising sales policy
Consult with staff and Artistic Director on publicity (posters, brochures, enews, website) and branding initiatives

Co-ordination with Artistic Director
• Work in partnership to serve as “face” of The Gamm in the community
• Review budgetary implications of artistic decisions and schedule
• Review education initiatives with Artistic Director and Director of Education and approve education budget
• Oversee administrative aspects of artistic/education staffing, including contracting and invoicing

San Diego Opera Settles With Its Former Director

July 18, 2014 - 6:44pm

“The opera said in a statement that it has mutually resolved its differences with Campbell and his ex-wife Ann Spira Campbell, a former high-ranking adminstrator at the company. It said the differences arose out of their former employment relationships with the opera.”

North Carolina Poet Laureate Resigns After Protests

July 18, 2014 - 6:29pm

“Less than a week into her role as North Carolina’s poet laureate, Valerie Macon, a self-published poet and state employee, resigned over questions about her literary credentials and qualifications.”

The Art Of Tests (How Testing Makes Us Smarter)

July 18, 2014 - 6:23pm

“The question is how to structure and use tests effectively. One insight that we and other researchers have uncovered is that tests serve students best when they’re integrated into the regular business of learning and the stakes are not make-or-break, as in standardized testing. That means, among other things, testing new learning within the context of regular classes and study routines.”

Unfunded UK Theatres Warn They’ll Have To Close

July 18, 2014 - 9:40am

“We don’t want to close because we would be letting down whole communities and a new generation of young theatregoers in rural areas whose access to quality professional theatre is limited, but there is only so long that you can struggle on unfunded. Even though we have been hugely successful in our fundraising, this work cannot operate unsubsidised.”

Educators Look At Multi-User Video Games As Effective Teaching Systems

July 18, 2014 - 9:37am

“The goal is to change the student’s mindset to a mastery orientation­—to promote motivation, engagement, active learning­—and to cultivate 21st century skills like collaboration, problem solving, creativity and systems thinking.”

A Creativity Pill? A Doctor Looks At The Evidence

July 18, 2014 - 9:35am

“I started painting from morning till night, and often all through the night until morning. I used countless numbers of brushes at a time. I used knives, forks, sponges … I would gouge open tubes of paint–it was everywhere. But I was still in control at that point. Then, I started painting on the walls, the furniture, even the washing machine. I would paint any surface I came across. I also had my ‘expression wall’ and I could not stop myself from painting and repainting [it] every night in a trance-like state. My partner could no longer bear it. People close to me realized that I crossed some kind of line into the pathological, and, at their instigation, I was hospitalized.”

So Opera Is Dying, Says The Met. But Does The Evidence Back That Up?

July 18, 2014 - 9:30am

“At its best, no art form is more thrilling than grand opera, yet none is at greater risk of following the dinosaurs down the cold road to extinction. The New York City Opera was forced to close its doors last year after seven decades of introducing nonrich New Yorkers to big-house opera. That could happen to the Met, too, unless Mr. Gelb—or his successor—takes a searching look at the company’s artistic policy.”

So Opera Is Dying, Eh? Here’s How Many New Opera Companies Have Formed In America Since 2000

July 18, 2014 - 9:28am

It’s a surprising number for an art form that has supposedly hit hard times.

The Heart Of Opera? Why, That Would Be Germany

July 18, 2014 - 9:25am

“According to the opera statistics website Operabase, last year 7,230 opera performances took place in Germany, one-third of the world’s total. The United States was a distant second, at 1,730 performances, followed by Russia and France, at 1,441 and 1,288, respectively. Austria ranked sixth, at 1,252 performances, and Switzerland ninth, at 795.”

Opera Out In The Wild (And Great Fun It Is Too)

July 18, 2014 - 9:22am

“Sometime a few years ago some local members of the arts scene decided that it would be fun to start a summer opera company and hold all the productions in an outdoor platz that is part of the ruins of an old milling company, now turned into an educational museum. The next morning, when they had sobered up, it still seemed like a good idea, so they ran with it. The result is one of the most fun and entertaining additions to the Twin Cities art scene in many a year.”

Is This MySpace For Art?

July 18, 2014 - 9:12am

“On the ART:I:CURATE site, collectors and artists create profiles – think Myspace, but for visual artists rather than musicians – and can buy and sell work. ART:I:CURATE members can also give their digital mark of approval with a Facebook-esque “like” button. In addition, ART:I:CURATE organizes exhibitions in non-gallery settings including apartments, warehouses and hotels.”

Robots Will Soon Be All Around Us. So What Are The Moral And Cultural Implications?

July 18, 2014 - 9:08am

“In many ways, they’re becoming more like us. Whether you find it exhilarating or terrifying (or both), progress in robotics and related fields like AI is raising new ethical quandaries and challenging legal codes that were created for a world in which a sharp line separates man from machine.”

Dancing While The Bombs Are Falling

July 18, 2014 - 9:01am

“The audience was in ‘the hole’ when the siren went off about 9:15. They evacuated to the safe room downstairs in the costume department, as did the dancers. We sat. The atmosphere was both rational (what are the chances of a rockets hitting right here?) and fearful (what if?), experienced and fresh, trying to keep the morale positive and alert; selfies were taken….We heard a few loud booms outside, presumably the iron dome intercepting the projectiles, and the sirens stopped.”

Japanese Artist Arrested For Distributing Selfie Of Ladyparts For 3D Printer

July 18, 2014 - 4:10am

“The artist, who works under the pseudonym Rokudenashiko – which roughly translates as ‘good-for-nothing girl’ – was arrested after emailing the data to 30 people who had answered a crowd-funding request for her recent artistic venture: a kayak inspired on her own genitalia she calls ‘pussy boat’.”

Searching For The Right Pricing Model For Good Theatre

July 18, 2014 - 4:01am

“Should we look to the past and replicate the ancient Rome model where the richest pay higher prices so the poorest can come for free? Should we look to the future and create our own bitcoin-like currency? … Can airline pricing in theatre really work?”

Shubert Organization, A Broadway Powerhouse, Moves Into Off-Broadway

July 18, 2014 - 3:56am

“The Shubert Organization, a major Broadway player that owns 17 of the 40 theaters there, is positioning itself to move into the commercial Off Broadway sector in a significant way with the acquisition of the New World Stages complex, according to three theater executives with knowledge of the expected deal.”

Edinburgh Fringe To Begin Cinemacasts

July 18, 2014 - 3:48am

“Productions from the Edinburgh fringe – including a one-man show from Steven Berkoff – are to be broadcast live to Odeon cinemas. The cinema chain has teamed up with online arts service Hibrow to bring live performances from the festival to [UK] cinemagoers in August.”