TCG Names Round 3 Recipients of Leadership U[niversity] - One-on-One Program

TCG Names Round 3 Recipients of Leadership U[niversity] - One-on-One Program

Theatre Communications Group (TCG) announces the 2015 Round 3 recipients of the Leadership U[niversity] - One-on-One program. Through support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, grants of $75,000 have been awarded to six exceptionally talented early-career leaders from all areas of theatre for professional development via mentorships at a TCG Member Theatre, with an additional $5,000 honorarium for their mentor. Three additional early-career leaders received finalist awards of $5,000 to support elements of their proposed mentorship plans. The goal of this program is to strengthen the field by developing the individuals who are the core and the future of theatre.

Leadership U[niversity] awards grants in two initiatives: One-on-One for early-career leaders and Continuing Ed for mid-career and veteran professionals. A total of $567,000 dollars was awarded to One-on-One recipients in this round, and Leadership U has awarded $1,701,000 over the life of the program. In addition to the core grant amount, a $10,000 Opportunity Fund is made available for one or more of the following: outstanding student loans, supplemental activities, and/or life needs (i.e. health care, child or elder care, or other medical expenses). A Travel Fund of up to an additional $4,500 is made available for mentee and mentor travel.

One-on-One Recipients:

John M. Baker will be mentored by John Clinton Eisner, Artistic Director at The Lark (New York, NY). Baker's mentorship will focus on deepening his thinking about the role of playwrights as critical leaders in our rapidly evolving and globalized society while devising new and effective strategies for supporting them in their work.

Benjamin Hanna will be mentored by Peter Brosius, artistic director of Children's Theatre Company (Minneapolis, MN). Hanna's mentorship will focus on the development of new work for children and young audiences, researching best practices in diversity and inclusion initiatives, and engaging teen theatre artists.

Jamil Jude will be mentored by Richard Cook, artistic director at Park Square Theatre (Minneapolis, MN). Jude will observe senior management and board meetings, season planning and producing conversations, as well as long-range strategy development and implementation. He will also help to create a new work development model that will outline and manifest a pathway for Park Square to institutionalize the commissioning and production of new plays.

Lauren Keating will be mentored by Joseph Haj, artistic director at the Guthrie Theater (Minneapolis, MN). Keating will function in the role of associate producer, working closely with artists and the Guthrie staff to connect rehearsal, performance, and administration, as well as engaging the larger community through special events and outreach activities.

Emily Sophia Knapp will be mentored by Davis McCallum, artistic director at Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival (Cold Spring, NY). Knapp will explore how an artistic director takes a theatre through a period of organizational transition and growth. She will focus on producing, strategic planning, and community engagement, taking the lead on HVSF's inaugural community-generated show, a 50-person version of Our Town in September, 2016.

Erik Schroeder will be mentored by Kory Kelly, director of marketing and communications at Center Theatre Group (Los Angeles, CA). Schroeder's focus will include leadership, management, audience development, and customer relationship management (CRM). He will also work on audience engagement around CTG's 50th anniversary and cross-pollination of audiences for the company's lines of programming at their three venues.

The Leadership U One-on-One application process is highly competitive and TCG receives proposals from a number of extremely talented rising leaders who are worthy of recognition. With this in mind, the following three candidates were awarded finalist awards of $5,000 each:

Alex Correia (Mount Vernon, NY) will spend time with Neil Pepe, artistic director of the Atlantic Theater Company (New York, NY).

Tom Ridgley (New York, NY) will spend time with Barry Edelstein, artistic director of The Old Globe (San Diego, CA).

Abigail E. Vega (San Antonio, TX) will spend time with Polly Carl, director of HowlRound at ArtsEmerson (Boston, MA).

The Leadership U[niversity] One-on-One Round 3 panel included Dean R. Gladden, managing director, Alley Theatre (Houston, TX); Erica Nagel, director of education and engagement, McCarter Theatre Center (Princeton, NJ); Joan Osato, producing director, Youth Speaks (San Francisco, CA); Dámaso Rodriguez, artistic director, Artists Repertory Theatre (Portland, OR); and Joan Schirle, founding artistic director, Dell'Arte International (Blue Lake, CA).

Founded in 1969, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation endeavors to strengthen, promote, and, where necessary, defend the contributions of the humanities and the arts to human flourishing and to the well-being of diverse and democratic societies by supporting exemplary institutions of higher education and culture as they renew and provide access to an invaluable heritage of ambitious, path-breaking work.

For over 50 years, Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre, has existed to strengthen, nurture and promote the professional not-for-profit American theatre. TCG's constituency has grown from a handful of groundbreaking theatres to nearly 700 member theatres and affiliate organizations and more than 12,000 individuals nationwide. TCG offers its members networking and knowledge-building opportunities through conferences, events, research and communications; awards grants, approximately $2 million per year, to theatre companies and individual artists; advocates on the federal level; and serves as the U.S. Center of the International Theatre Institute, connecting its constituents to the global theatre community. TCG is North America's largest independent publisher of dramatic literature, with 14 Pulitzer Prizes for Best Play on the TCG booklist. It also publishes the award-winning American Theatre magazine and ARTSEARCH, the essential source for a career in the arts. In all of its endeavors, TCG seeks to increase the organizational efficiency of its member theatres, cultivate and celebrate the artistic talent and achievements of the field and promote a larger public understanding of, and appreciation for, the theatre. Visit for more.

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