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Artistic Director | Durango Arts Center (Durango, CO)

TITLE: Artistic Director
REPORTS TO: Executive Director
SUPERVISES: Staff: Tech Director and Applause Program Director, Indep. Contractors: production cast and crew
FLSA STATUS: Part-time/Exempt—30 hours per week, occasional evenings and weekends required for
performances and events
WAGE & BENEFITS: $18-19 per hour DOE. Eligible for either employer-based health insurance
(65% of premium covered by DAC) or a monthly wellness bonus. Annual paid time off includes 2 weeks vacation within the first year, 10 federal holidays and 2 personal days.

Interested candidates should submit the following via email (preferably in a single document) to ATTN: Kate Loague, Director of Development, with the subject line Artistic Director / Your Name
● Cover letter delineating your experience and artistic vision as it pertains to DAC’s theatre program (1 page)
● A submission of productions you have directed or held a significant coordinating role (2 pages max)
● Resume or curriculum vitae (2 pages max)
● Up to three professional references


The Durango Arts Center’s (DAC) Artistic Director is responsible for conceiving, developing, and implementing the artistic vision and focus of the performing arts department of the organization with adherence to a high standard of quality aligned with DAC’s mission and strategic objectives. This includes the overarching selection of DAC’s annual theatre season (currently 4 productions per year) and coordination of all elements related to contracting with crew, performers and musicians. The Artistic Director is encouraged to think beyond traditional performing arts of musical/non-musical theatre to diversify DAC’s community engagement with local and national performance groups. This position manages DAC’s annual 10-Minute Play contest, staged readings and festival. The Artistic Director also has a strong involvement with DAC’s year-round performing arts program, DAC Applause (serving ages 4-18), acting as a mentor and collaborator to the Applause Director, as well as providing teaching and directorial support in the after school classes and summer camps. In addition to the Applause Director, the Artistic Director supervises a Facility Manager / Technical Director to ensure an efficient, successful rental program of the theater and dance studio. This position will report directly to the Executive Director.

● Minimum education of Bachelor of Arts with a preference for a Masters degree in the arts or theatre, or equivalent combination of education and experience.
● Minimum of five years of professional experience and responsibility as an artistic director, freelance director, theatre arts instructor, producer, or other artistic leadership role.
● Experience in building and working within nonprofit budgets is essential.
● Seeking a visionary creative professional with a broad knowledge base of both traditional performing arts and performance art
● Must be proficient computer skills needed to compile reports, budgets, and effectively manage productions (Microsoft Office, Google Drive apps and Gmail, TIX, Submittable).
● Engaging and outgoing personality with exceptional interpersonal skills, able to quickly develop rapport and build and maintain productive relationships with donors, audiences, colleagues, volunteers and the performing arts community.
● Must be self-motivated with a demonstrated ability to handle multiple tasks simultaneously with strong planning and organizational skills.
● Ability to work a flexible schedule, with occasional evenings and weekends for rehearsals, shows and events.

● In collaboration with the theatre department staff—Applause Program Director and Technical Director—the Artistic Director researches and selects shows for the annual theatre season that are aligned with DAC’s mission and strategic objectives. DAC’s season currently consists of 4 productions per year:
o Winter (March)—Adult contemporary drama
o Fall (August-September)—Musical production
o Holiday (December)—Culminating musical produced with students of DAC Applause performing arts education program. Directed by Applause Program Director.
o 10-Minute Play Celebration—Call for proposals in October-February; Staged Readings in June and Festival production of five finalist and winning plays in mid-October.
● Beyond or within the annual theatre season, the Artistic Director will remain abreast of trends in performance art with the intention of diversifying community engagement beyond musical/non-musical theatre.
● Directs and/or choreographs a minimum of one show per season and secures directors/choreographers for remaining shows. If unable to secure, responsibility is the Artistic Director’s to direct/choreograph/produce.
● For most shows (unless the director has secured them) secures costume designer, set designer, stage manager and musical director as appropriate.
● Sits in on auditions and assists with casting regardless of directorial role in the production.
● Maintain oversight of shows and works with individual directors as needed. Supervise and support guest directors to ensure all programs meet artistic and budget goals.
● Manages program scheduling; maintains production/performance calendars.
● Oversee the 10-Minute Play Celebration, from contest submissions (via Submittable), coordinating community reviews, the staged readings and culminating festival of finalist and award-winning plays. The Artistic Director directs at least one of the festival plays.
● Coordinate outreach activities related to the promotion and engagement of theatre season productions with community organizations as appropriate.

● Provide overall collaborative leadership and support to the Applause program in selection of productions (6 annually), and to enhance the learning opportunities and environments for students to integrate performances into the academic program.
● Teach at least one DAC Applause class in the after school fall semester and at least one class in the spring semester.
● Direct one of the musical or non-musical theatre summer camps.

● Coordinate performing arts learning opportunities for adults, currently comprised of daylong Saturday workshops in the areas of acting, storytelling, musical theatre dance and other relevant topics.

● Oversees all agreements and forms required for productions; drafts agreements, contracts and copyright applications; ensures compliance with the various licensing agencies.
● Oversees the development and administration of the theatre department budget; participates in the forecast of funds needed for staffing, equipment, materials and supplies.
● Contributes to the success of the theatre operations by supporting the work of the Director of Development in cultivating and implementing new revenue sources by delivering information in a timely manner (at a minimum of 6 mos in advance of a production).
● Contributes to an annual marketing plan for each production that will be executed by DAC’s Marketing Director by delivering comprehensive information by set deadlines; compile all production information for PR activities, and engage in media inquires and interviews as requested.
● Responsible for outreach and maintaining mutually beneficial relationships with local educational institutions with the objective of developing a successful internship program that supports DAC theatrical productions and provides the intern with valuable professional experience and/or portfolio pieces.
● Publicly represents the DAC Theatre programs to continually enhance its image, visibility, and influence across the community. This includes attendance of events and performances produced by outside companies, and serving as an active resource and collaborator in the performing arts community.

This job summary is not to be interpreted as all-inclusive; rather it aims to identify essential functions and qualifications of the Artistic Director position. Applicants may be required to perform job-related responsibilities and tasks other than those stated above; certain functions not explicitly mentioned in this description are nevertheless understood to be essential to the position.

The Durango Arts Center will provide employees with an appropriate office and office equipment. DAC is a fast-paced, convivial work environment and this position will interact with fellow program and leadership staff, artists and the general public. DAC is physically located in downtown Durango, within a historical 14,000 sq. foot facility that was once a car dealership.

The Durango Arts Center is a nonprofit visual and performing arts organization located in Southwest Colorado that serves the region by fostering creative expression through gallery exhibits, live theatre, artist services, the Durango Autumn Arts Festival and educational programs for all ages. DAC strives to support a creative dialogue among community members, ensuring that culture informs local decision-making and enriches our lives. Please visit our website,, for more information.

Note to Candidate:
DAC is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate against employees or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, gender, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status or any other class protected by law.