Artistic Director Job Posting

Position Description

Salary range: $80,000 – $90,000/year plus benefits
Position Type: Full-time, hybrid
Start date: January 2025 (ideal)
Application deadline: August 9, 2024

Ten Thousand Things Theater Company (TTT) seeks an Artistic Director (AD) to drive the artistic vision and direction of the company. The AD is responsible for ensuring the success of TTT’s mission to awaken the creative spirit of audiences and artists by bringing essential and exceptional theater to people from all backgrounds and life experiences. The AD collaborates with the Board of Directors and Managing Director to achieve the mission and strategic goals of the organization. The position is a co-report to the Board.

Our Performance Model
Ten Thousand Things awakens the creative spirit of audiences and artists by bringing essential and exceptional theater to people from all backgrounds and life experiences. Our free performances take place at shelters for the unhoused, correctional facilities, low-income senior centers, after-school programs, women’s shelters, and locations in greater/rural Minnesota. We also perform for paying audiences in more traditional theater venues. TTT believes that theater is better when everyone is in the audience. Our model is rooted in telling bold, universal stories that honor a diversity of identities.

Theatergoers experience the immediacy and vibrancy of theater through a TTT performance in which there is no stage and actors perform in the middle of the audience. With minimal sets and costumes, the finest quality actors in the region fully engage the audience by distilling the story to its essence. We perform in the round, with the lights on and minimal sets and live music. Through this dynamic exchange, artists and audience together breathe new life into theater, reminding us that theater is essential to all our lives.

The Region
The Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, the 16th largest metropolitan area in the country, are celebrated for their vibrant cultural scene and exceptional quality of life. Known for their nationally renowned park systems and abundant lakes, the Twin Cities offer a unique blend of natural beauty and urban convenience. This metropolitan area is also a hub for business, home to many Fortune 500 companies, including Target, Best Buy, Cargill, Medtronic, and United Health Group, as well as numerous professional sports teams.

The region is considered a major center for the arts. Esteemed theater companies, in addition to TTT, include the Guthrie, Mixed Blood, Penumbra, Jungle Theater, Theater Mu, New Native Theater, Theater Latté Da, and Children’s Theatre Company. The region also boasts two major orchestras—the Minnesota Orchestra and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra—and significant museums, including the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minnesota Museum of American Art, and the Weisman Museum. With a flourishing dance community and several Broadway touring theaters, the cultural offerings are diverse and abundant. Generous state funding and philanthropic support ensure that the arts continue to flourish, making the Twin Cities an ideal place for artists and art enthusiasts. The area’s affordability, coupled with its rich artistic landscape and distinctive, diverse neighborhoods, makes it an attractive place to live and work.

Summary of responsibilities

General Leadership (40%)

  • Provide leadership and vision in the areas of artistic direction and strategic planning.
  • Develop, lead, and retain high-performance staff.
  • Create and maintain relationships with leaders, organizations, and the community at large who align with our values to ensure that we reach non-traditional audiences.
  • Maintain and nurture relationships with TTT’s Artist Core members, teaching and theater artists in Minnesota and beyond.
  • Attend and actively contribute to all TTT Board meetings, subcommittee meetings for the Executive Committee, and strategic planning sessions. This includes reporting and supporting Board member identification.
  • Build and nurture trusting working relationships with a diverse group of board members, donors, artists, volunteers, patrons, staff, and peers in the arts community.
  • Communicate a clear understanding of issues around social justice and gender equity.
  • Commit to and practice the organization’s objectives of belonging, inclusion, and equity.
  • Establish open and consistent communication lines with staff, board, and artists, providing them with the tools and information they need to succeed.
  • With the Managing Director, maintain a day-to-day presence to lead and support staff, including attendance at regular staff meetings.


Programs & Artistic Direction (35%)

  • Develop and execute the artistic vision for the theatrical season, overseeing the planning and management of productions.
  • Craft a season that draws from a combination of classic, musical, and contemporary works.
  • Direct two productions within the season and provide guidance to a guest director for the third production, ensuring artistic alignment with the company’s mission.
  • Oversee unique projects and initiatives, which may include artistic workshops in correctional facilities, the production of Ten Thousand Voices, media production, or others.
  • Engage non-traditional audiences, including people at correctional facilities, shelters, and adult education centers, as well as immigrant populations, veterans, people with disabilities, BIPOC, Native Americans, and other communities that have historically been underserved.
  • Attract and develop compelling, culturally rich, relevant artistic projects, programs, and community engagement efforts.
  • Oversee and attend yearly general auditions, identifying talent and casting for the season.
  • Work with the Production Manager to identify suitable new performance venues as necessary.


Fundraising (15%)

  • Act as the primary spokesperson and organizational representative in soliciting funding support, establishing new and maintaining ongoing relationships with community partners, funders, and key individual donors.
  • Facilitate the creation of new methods for engaging supporters and stakeholders, including funders, the media, community leaders, city representatives, field collaborators, individual donors, and youth.
  • Provide vision and program outlines to enable the Managing Director and Development Director to identify funding prospects and craft language to support those applications.
  • Advocate for arts funding through representation and participation at the national, state, regional, and local levels.
  • Meet with major donor prospects as identified by the Development Director.


External Relations/Field Representation (10%)

  • Lead the design and fulfillment of artistic and institutional marketing plans, public relations efforts, and other communications initiatives.
  • Represent TTT at networking and community events.
  • Actively participate in local, state, and national networks and maintain awareness of significant developments and trends in the field.
  • Build and sustain relationships with theater artists and producers nationally to continue uplifting the TTT model.


Minimum Qualifications

  • Four (4) years of experience as a director, which should include a combination of the following elements:
    1. Professional directorial experience at a nationally recognized theater
    2. Experience directing for non-traditional audiences
    3. Evidence of artistic rigor, innovation, and invigoration in directing
    4. Deep, professional experience directing classical theater, musicals, and/or new plays
  • Evidence of leadership and vision in artistic direction.
  • Three (3) years of experience working with the administrative side of a theater company, including aspects such as budgeting, fundraising, marketing, and people management.
  • Evidence of engaging diverse leaders, organizations, and the community at large to ensure successful programs.
  • Experience building and nurturing trusting working relationships with a diverse group of board members, donors, artists, volunteers, patrons, staff, and peers in the arts community.


Preferred Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in theater
  • Experience developing or selecting compelling, culturally rich, and relevant artistic programs and community engagement efforts.
  • Experience directing with minimal production values (no lights, minimal set, props) and/or theater in the round.
  • Experience working with heightened language, movement, or choreography and the incorporation of music in a theatrical experience.
  • Experience acting as the primary spokesperson and organizational representative in soliciting funding support and establishing and maintaining relationships with community partners and key individual donors.
  • Experience leading marketing and public relations communications initiatives.


Position details

Salary range:  $80,000 – $90,000
Benefits:  $400/month payment toward health benefits, $55/month internet/cell phone reimbursement, 9 holidays plus 3 weeks PTO annually, and a SIMPLE IRA with 3% match.
Work environment:  TTT staff all work remotely, except when required to work in-person for rehearsals, performances, occasional in-person staff meetings, and retreats, board meetings, and donor/funder meetings. TTT currently rents rehearsal and performance space on an ad hoc basis, and often schedules individual or group meetings in homes, coffee shops, or other ad hoc meeting spaces.
Start date:  January 2025 (ideal)

Application Process
To apply, please send a résumé and cover letter to TTT@artsprogress.com by August 9, 2024.
Applications will be evaluated on a rolling basis.

Equal Opportunity Employment
Ten Thousand Things Theater Company is an equal opportunity employer. All employment decisions are based on individual qualifications without regard to race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, disability, marital status, political affiliation, status with respect to public assistance, veteran status, or other status protected by law.