Hangar Theatre director leaving at year’s end

Following the highly successful completion of a capital campaign that raised over $5 million and an extensive renovation of Ithaca’s Hangar Theatre, Lisa Bushlow has announced her decision to resign her role as the theatre’s executive director at the end of 2012 in order to pursue new professional opportunities. According to Ann Costello, president of the Hangar Theatre Board of Trustees, Bushlow and the board are discussing a continuing role for Bushlow with the theatre, with an emphasis on sustainable development. Peter Flynn, the Hangar’s artistic director for four years, will continue in his role with the theatre.Bushlow first joined the Hangar Theatre 24 years ago as a stage management intern for the popular Kiddstuff series. After working for a semester at the Kennedy Center’s Theatre for Young People in Washington, D.C., she was recruited by the Hangar to design and implement winter theatre education opportunities for youth. For the next decade she served as the Hangar’s education director, creating extensive arts-in-education programming for New York State primary and secondary students and teachers, including the Artists-in-the-Schools program, School Tours, School-Time Performances, and Project 4. Along with former artistic director Robert Moss, she also developed the Lab Company, a nationally recognized professional-theatre training program, and expanded the Hangar’s Next Generation School of Theatre. In 2001 the theatre’s board of trustees appointed Bushlow to the position of executive director, a position she has held for the past eleven years.While working for the Hangar Theatre, Bushlow has served as a panelist for the New York State Council on the Arts, consulted for public and private schools, and directed area theatre productions for youth. She has received a number of community honors and awards in recognition of her exemplary work in theatre and education.“I have grown with the Hangar Theatre since my days as an undergraduate student at Cornell University,” says Bushlow. “My years here have provided me with so many rich opportunities to learn, to form meaningful relationships, and to serve this theatre and community. At this point in my life I am eager to explore other professional avenues and personal interests in Ithaca while maintaining my fond connection with the Hangar. I look forward to advocating for the theatre in a different capacity.” “The Hangar Theatre is a success today because of Lisa’s commitment, the strength of her relationships, and her unwavering belief in the value of theatre in our community,” says Costello. “The Hangar Theatre operates as a year-round performance venue now. We hope that with Lisa’s ongoing affiliation we can sustain our growth and continue to produce the best possible regional theatre programming both on our stage and in our schools.”“When I joined the Hangar Theatre it was clear that Lisa’s charisma, innovation, and dedication had brought the theatre to its current success,” says Flynn. “I am honored to work so closely with Lisa on the Hangar’s growth and am inspired to continue the good work at hand.”The theatre will conduct a national search for the position of managing director. This reflects a shift in organizational structure back to the theatre’s previous model of team management including a managing director and an artistic director. A search committee of the board has begun the recruitment process, according to Costello, and hopes to appoint a new managing director by the end of the year.

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