ATLANTA – The members of the Board of Directors of Synchronicity Theatre are pleased to announce that Celise Kalke has been selected to be the Company’s new Managing Director. Her official start date will be October 22, 2018.
On the heels of its Managing for Excellence grant from the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, Ms. Kalke, alongside Producing Artistic Director Rachel May, will usher in the next phase of the Company’s strategic development. She will direct all aspects of financial and business operations of the organization, from both a strategic and operational perspective, including long-range and annual planning. She will also be pivotal in working with the Board of Directors as it creates and executes fundraising and growth strategies. She will demonstrate a commitment to Synchronicity’s mission to uplift the voices of women and girls, and inspire confidence in stakeholders, artists, and patrons.
Since 2005, Ms. Kalke has been the Director of New Projects/Artistic Programs Manager at the Alliance Theatre, where she managed the development and production of world premiere new works, and discovered and mentored artists new to the field of American Theatre, including Academy Award-winner Tarell Alvin McCraney and Laurents/Hatcher-winner Jiréh Breon Holder. She also developed and grew the Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition and the Reiser Atlanta Artists Lab, which have launched the careers of multiple emerging playwrights and theatre artists.
From 2003 to 2005, Ms. Kalke was the Director of the Literary Department at the Public Theater in New York City, where she developed projects, managed playwright commissions and mentored emerging playwrights under producer George C. Wolfe. From 1999 to 2003, She was the Resident Dramaturg at the Court Theatre in Chicago. In the late 1990’s, Ms. Kalke was a Staff Dramaturg in the Julliard Drama Division, where she worked part-time with the Juilliard Playwrights program headed by Marsha Norman and Chris Durang, and with students such as Adam Rapp, Brooke Berman, David Lindsay-Abaire, Jessica Goldberg, and Michael Winn. She was a Dramaturg for Michael Kahn, Garland Wright, and JoAnne Akalaitis.
In the 1990s, Ms. Kalke lived in Prague, Czech Republic, was a member of Misery Loves Company a Czech/English company, and worked with the Narodni Divadlo and Divadlo Pod Palmovkou while a student at DAMU, the Prague Theatre Academy. She speaks Czech and German.
Mentor, teacher and invaluable resource to the Atlanta Theatre community, Ms. Kalke has worked with the Emory University Theatre Department, Creative Writing Department and Center for Ethics; Kennesaw State University; Atlanta Women in Theatre; Working Title Playwrights; and Actor’s Express.
“It’s an honor to join Rachel May, the Synchronicity Board, and this great staff in the work of uplifting women and girls,” says Ms. Kalke. “I am humbled in this historic moment to support Synchronicity’s mission, and so excited to assume a leadership position in the Atlanta theatre community. Synchronicity is poised for growth, and I’m honored to grow my strategic thinking and management skills with this wonderful company. I’m excited for the opportunity to closely work with Rachel May, whose taste and artistry I’ve admired since I saw The Long Christmas Ride Home (2005).”
“As one of Synchronicity’s co-founders, I am so proud of our company’s growth in the past several years,” said Producing Artistic Director Rachel May. “Having Celise join us at this pivotal time in our history, as we move into the next phase of embodying our mission, is the perfect step forward. Celise’s smarts and reputation are un-paralleled, and she has deep collaborative roots in both the local and national theatre community. Beyond that, she is a strategic thinker, a visionary and a bridge-builder; the exact qualities we need in our new Managing Director. I cannot wait to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with her as we work with our stellar board of directors to get smarter, gutsier, bolder and bigger.”
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am thrilled to welcome Celise Kalke as Synchronicity’s next Managing Director,” said Geneva Gross, Chair of Synchronicity Theatre’s Board of Directors. “Celise has not only been a supporter of Synchronicity over the years, but is excited to help fulfill the mission with innovative and strategic thinking that will help elevate and expand our outreach in the community. Her leadership and business acumen, coupled with her deeply-rooted experience within the national theatre community, is exactly what we need during this exciting growth stage of the organization. We see the partnership between Celise as Managing Director, and Rachel as Producing Artistic Director, as marking an exciting chapter in our development.”
In June, playwright Lee Nowell stepped down as Managing Director of the organization in order to focus on a variety of creative projects. She remains an Artistic Associate for the Company. Since June, Virginia (Gin) Nugent has served as Interim Managing Director.
* * *
ABOUT SYNCHRONICITY THEATRE
Founded in 1997 by four women with a desire to work collaboratively and bring challenging, meaningful theatre to Atlanta audiences, Synchronicity Theatre produces smart, gutsy, high-quality theatre that sparks community connections and uplifts the voices of women and girls. Synchronicity supports women artists, forges long-term and effective community partnerships and develops new work. The Company reaches nearly 14,000 patrons a year through its season of plays for adults (Bold Voices) and families (Family Series); community outreach; educational programming, including Playmaking for Kids (PFK) summer camps and after school programs, and the award-winning Playmaking for Girls (PFG) program. An intimate theatre in the heart of midtown at Peachtree Pointe became Synchronicity’s home in the summer of 2014.