Executive and Artistic Director, Cal Performances


The University of California, Berkeley invites nominations and applications for the position of Executive and Artistic Director of Cal Performances.


The Organization

Cal Performances is the internationally acclaimed performing arts presenting, commissioning, and producing organization based at the University of California, Berkeley.  Widely recognized as a leader in the performing arts field, Cal Performances presents more than 120 performances annually in classical and modern dance, chamber music and orchestra, opera, vocal and instrumental recitals, early music and contemporary classical music, world music and dance, jazz, theater, and speakers' series. Cal Performances serves 250,000 patrons annually through performances along with arts education, residency, and community programs.

The mission of Cal Performances is to produce and present performances of the highest artistic quality, enhanced by programs that explore compelling intersections of education and the performing arts. Cal Performances serves the community through a well-developed program of arts education, including Cal Performances' groundbreaking Berkeley RADICAL initiative, which explores important and timely cultural issues.


Student Musical Activities (SMA) has been an integral part of Cal Performances since 1987. The various groups that comprise SMA (The Cal Marching Band, UC Jazz Ensembles, and UC Choral Ensembles) have served the University for more than a century. Today, SMA’s 600 student members perform at 500 events per year and contribute as ambassadors of the University’s spirit and mission at official events, fundraisers, and athletic competitions. SMA students benefit from a rich program of extra-curricular musical instruction and performance opportunities as well as experiences in arts management and leadership.


Cal Performances has an annual operating budget of $18.5 million with a full-time staff of 65, a part-time staff of 200, and more than 200 volunteers. A Board of Trustees provides fundraising support and advocacy for the organization, and advises Cal Performances’ management.


For more information, please visit www.calperformances.org.


The Position

The Executive and Artistic Director of Cal Performances provides the overall artistic vision and executive leadership for the organization. The Director is responsible for a full range of business management issues and for planning the programs, functions, and activities of the organization. The Executive and Artistic Director works closely with the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees serves in an advisory capacity to the Director, who has direct decision-making authority and responsibility for all programs and operations sponsored or co-sponsored by Cal Performances and SMA. The Director reports to the Chancellor of the University.



Candidate Profile

The successful candidate will be a proven leader who combines a thorough knowledge of the performing arts with a strong record of success in programming, presenting, audience development, financial management, facilities management, and fundraising. That person will have a broad and compelling vision for the role of the performing arts and the performing arts presenter in a university environment.  He or she will have extensive experience in developing an artistic program, collaborating with artists, and negotiating with artists’ agents. The candidate will have the demonstrated ability to set priorities and to make sound strategic and financial decisions.


The successful candidate will have superb interpersonal, communication, and supervisory skills. He or she will have the ability to articulate the goals and programs of the organization to various groups including the campus, the public, and media representatives. He or she will be able to work with a diverse constituency and collaborate effectively. The candidate will have experience leading and supervising a high caliber senior management team.


The successful candidate will have a minimum of 10 years’ leadership experience as a chief executive or senior manager in a performing arts organization.  A Bachelor’s degree or equivalent is required; formal education in music or the arts is preferred. The candidate will be able to maintain a rigorous schedule that includes evening and weekend performances and events.  Experience working in a university environment will be considered an asset.



The University will offer a competitive compensation and benefits package.



Potential candidates are invited to send a cover letter that addresses both interest in and qualifications for the position. Please include a resume of no more than four pages and a list of three professional references. Kindly do not send additional materials unless subsequently requested to do so by the Search Committee. Submissions will be treated as confidential and references will not be contacted without the candidate’s prior knowledge.


Cal Performances – Executive and Artistic Director Search

c/o Catherine French Group

2500 Q Street, NW, Suite 623

Washington, DC 20007 applications@catherinefrenchgroup.com


Please submit material electronically in PDF format.


The position will remain open until filled. The Search Committee will begin to review applications in mid- September.


The University of California, Berkeley is an equal opportunity employer.