FAQs about Mark's Departure
Recently, I announced that I would be leaving Vermont Stage Company at the end of the 2010-2011 season. This has prompted a flurry of questions, some of which I'll answer here.
I've been doing theatre for 35 years (if you go back to my first play in high school), and I've been running Vermont Stage for the past 10. That's a lot of theatre. It dawned on me that I might like to do something else, explore some new challenges.
What led to the decision?
It's something I've been considering for a few years now, but every time I seriously contemplated leaving, I ran up against the notion that theatre was all I knew. Recently, however, I realized that I've learned some skills that may be applicable in other fields.
Why make the announcement now, if you're not leaving for another year?
I wanted to give my board plenty of time to find a replacement, so I told them as soon as I had made the decision. We immediately started to plan the transition, a process that will take nearly a year, and part of that plan was to keep everyone that has a stake in the company apprised of our progress.
What are the plans for finding your replacement?
The board and I will work together to undertake a local and national search for a new artistic director.
What will you be doing next?
To be honest, I have no idea. As I mentioned, I may explore fields outside of theatre altogether, although teaching theatre still holds some appeal for me. Fortunately, I have a whole year to see what might be possible.
Will you be leaving the area?
At this point, my wife and I have no plans to leave. We have a lovely home in Charlotte and we're very fond of being part of this community, so I would be very surprised if we decided to relocate.
What do you see for the future of Vermont Stage?
I'm very excited about the future of the company. After 10 years of one person's vision informing the work we do, I believe that the company will benefit from an injection of new energy and new ideas. I certainly can't predict what a new leader will bring, but given that I will be closely involved in the decision making process, and given the nature of FlynnSpace, I'm quite sure that you'll see the same high level of professionalism, you'll still see a highly eclectic slate of shows, and you'll still experience the sense of intimacy that's become a hallmark of our productions.