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The Industry Expands Artistic Leadership

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Sharon will continue his affiliation with the company as a member of the new Artistic Director Cooperative.

The Industry Expands Artistic Leadership

The Industry has significantly restructured and expanded its artistic leadership, forming a cooperative of three equal co-artistic directors who will bolster the vision and expand the artistic programming of the organization as it begins its second decade. Sharon has served as artistic director of The Industry since its inception and will continue his affiliation with the groundbreaking company as one of three members of the new Artistic Director Cooperative. He will be joined by newly appointed members Ash Fure, a "staggeringly original" (The New Yorker) sonic artist and 2016 Pulitzer Prize finalist in music, and Malik Gaines, an interdisciplinary artist, writer, composer, and scholar who has garnered international recognition for his solo and collaborative work, including as a founding member of the group My Barbarian, subject of a 20-year career survey at the Whitney Museum opening in October 2021.

In addition to jointly shepherding the overall artistic vision of the Los Angeles-based organization, the three co-artistic directors will each be responsible for creating one large-scale production during their multi-year tenures, which begin on July 1, 2021. The announcement about the Artistic Director Cooperative and appointments of Fure and Gaines was made by Ruth Eliel, Chair of The Industry's Board of Directors.

"On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am delighted to welcome Ash Fure and Malik Gaines to The Industry as inaugural members of the new Artistic Director Cooperative, joining Yuval Sharon," says Eliel. "They are passionate advocates for inclusivity in the arts, and their diverse professional backgrounds, thoughtful leadership, bold risk-taking, and visionary experimental artistry complement the mission and fabric of The Industry as well as Yuval's own inventive work. Expanding The Industry's artistic leadership into a cooperative of three equal co-artistic directors at this crucial juncture in its history gives the organization tremendous creative depth and flexibility while also providing a vital opportunity to increase artistic programming and promote a multiplicity of inspiring and innovative voices as the company launches its second decade."

Founder Yuval Sharon states, "The Industry began as an experiment and is dedicated to the experimental; the inauguration of an Artistic Director Cooperative might be our most far-reaching experiment yet, going right to the heart of our organization's identity and creating a new model for artistic leadership. Having Malik and Ash join me to form a team of three artistic voices will be enormously generative for everyone: for me personally, with the opportunity to be in constant dialogue with two artists and thinkers I admire so much; for the company, with a constant and constantly shifting presence of artistic voices at the helm; for our audiences, as our offerings will increase from one project every two years to a project every year; and for our community, with the addition of new perspectives on the intersection of opera and Los Angeles."

Ash Fure says, "I am thrilled to be joining The Industry in this new leadership formation. Now more than ever, we need new modes of coming together and slowing down into the many intensities we face. Immersive performance can open experience anew, allowing people to show up wilder, to release, resist, and reimagine. I've admired The Industry's fearless forays into urban opera from afar, and am eager to entangle our creative visions as we ask what acts of collective listening and cathartic encounter might have to offer these urgent times."

Malik Gaines comments, "I've been an admirer of The Industry for years and am eager to contribute to and learn from the company's great work. I'm excited for this opportunity to think about opera as something from the future as much as the past. This Artistic Director team uniquely brings together a deep knowledge of music with a daring and clever sense of how to move that medium through other fields of experience. Opera is so capacious; it may be big enough to hold some of the problems people are having being together in our present. I'm looking forward to bringing my own expertise to this project and to LA's arts landscape."

Executive Director Elizabeth Cline states "It's thrilling to be part of LA's changing arts landscape. When The Industry returns to live performance this fall, we will emerge in the process of transformation - becoming more artist-driven, experimental and courageous, and putting our values into practice, holistically. With a multiplicity of voices and experiences at the helm of this organization, we will be ready to respond to and work with a broad range of ideas, artists, and communities in new and meaningful ways. I'm particularly pleased that The Industry will introduce Ash to LA audiences, and reintroduce them to Malik, a California-native currently living in New York. Together, we are all very excited to get LA-based artists and art workers exploring and making again."

Through ambitious interdisciplinary collaborations, the artist-driven company produces experimental works that defy boundaries and attract new audiences to the artform. It is widely recognized for premiering such large-scale, trailblazing, site-responsive productions as Invisible Cities (2013), Hopscotch (2015), War of the Worlds (2017), and Sweet Land (2020), as well as smaller scale, artistically ambitious programs. Serving as an incubator for new talent and for artists predominantly based in Los Angeles, The Industry is dedicated to fostering opera that is emergent, responsive to new perspectives, and plays an essential role in shaping civic identity. For more information on The Industry, visit https://theindustryla.org.

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