Full-Time Executive Director
The Bearded Ladies Cabaret is seeking an Executive Director (ED) to partner with Artistic Director, John Jarboe, to lead the next phase of our growth. Working alongside Jarboe, the ED is the key management leader tasked with steering the artistic community of the Bearded Ladies thoughtfully as we shift from being an artist collective into a more formalized institutional identity. We are one of Philadelphia’s most visible and prolific queer arts producers and presenters, and are looking for someone who is as passionate about fostering and managing a thoughtful and growing institution as we are.
We actively welcome and encourage folx to apply from equity-seeking groups, including those who identify as indigenous, black, people of color, trans, nonbinary, queer, people with disabilities, and intersections of those identities.
Apply if you would describe yourself with some or all of the following statements:
- Able to keep the big picture in mind and dig into the details
- Able to thrive in a highly collaborative, team-oriented work culture and can communicate effectively with colleagues, in both in-person and remote environments
- Loves identifying and creatively solving problems as they arise
- Loves the word “Queer”
- Is passionate about and is experienced in producing and/or administrating and/or fundraising/development in the performing arts field
- Loves managing people and creating human centered, equitable systems of collaboration
- Has experience and knowledge of non-profit arts management and how to work equitably and with an anti-racist lens within and against this system
Compensation: The salary range for this role is between $60-75K. This is a full-time/salaried position, eligible for health and vacation benefits.
Bearded Mission: The Bearded Ladies Cabaret is a queer arts organization that sits on your lap and sings you a story. Whether it’s an opera, a home-made cabaret, a musical walking tour, or a show on a truck, we employ song, spectacle, storytelling, and heart to welcome audiences into moments of joy, healing, and subversion. Through sharing our original pieces and creating bespoke platforms for performance at home in Philadelphia, nationally, and abroad, we nurture artistic connection for a community of misfits, rabble-rousers, chanteuses, and the people who love and need them.
Bearded Values: One central value to all our artistic and administrative practice is heart. By practicing with “heart” we mean practicing with humanity, care, vulnerability, and clear communication. As we live in both the process of artmaking and the systems that support that work, we aim to work with equity, prioritizing people (artists, technicians, and administrators) over products. We see our work as rooted in queer liberation, which does not exist without the liberation of all oppressed groups. Prioritizing liberation and heart in art making means creating a healthy space with systems of support for artists, administrators, and technicians. Click here for a more detailed look at our values and mission.
Where you will work: The Bearded Ladies have an office and rehearsal space in West Philadelphia. We call it The Beardcave. As of May 2022, The Bearded Ladies are currently operating in a primarily remote work environment, with some in-person meetings, and onsite time for performances. This balance of in-office and remote time is evolving given the state of Covid-19. The Executive Director must be based in or willing to relocate to the Philadelphia area.
Process: The hiring process will involve three rounds of interviews. The first will be a short phone interview. At least one of the two later interviews will be in-person with the organization covering travel costs as needed.
Search Committee: Expressions of interest and formal applications will be reviewed by members of the Bearded Ladies search committee. Search committee members include: John Jarboe (Artistic Director), Sally Ollove (Associate Artistic Director), Briana Nicholas (Operations Manager), Anthony Martinez-Briggs (Associate Artist Advisory Board Member), Veronica Chapman-Smith (Associate Artist Advisory Board Member), Chris Bartlett (Executive Director of the William Way Center), and Emily Schreiner (Former Beards Interim COO, Future Board Member).
Full Job Description
The Executive Director (ED) will partner with Founding Artistic Director John Jarboe, The Bearded Ladies staff, Associate Artists, and the larger community in shaping the next phase of The Bearded Ladies Cabaret. They will lead The Bearded Ladies in community building, resource development and allocation, and strategic planning. The ED will manage staff and facilities, and partner with the Artistic Director on program strategy and the long-term growth of the organization.
- Strategic Planning & Values: The ED will lead strategic planning to ensure the organization is meeting its goals around The Bearded Ladies’ values and mission. They will partner with various department heads to ensure strategies and goals are aligned with the overall vision of the organization.
- Resource Development & Allocation: The ED will be responsible for creating a comprehensive revenue strategy for the organization, including overseeing efforts around foundational and governmental support, individual donations, special events, and earned income. The organization is currently stable. The ED will help strategize around ways to grow from its current stable base. They will supervise budgeting and cash flow as led by the Operations Manager. The ED will manage The Bearded Ladies’ transition to 501c3 status (currently underway), including the creation of a Bearded Board.
- Community and Relationship Development: The ED will act as the primary liaison for key stakeholders, including board members, partner organizations, and key donors. They will be active and visible in the larger community as a representative of the Beards. Alongside the Artistic Director, the ED will be the go-to person for the many intersecting communities involved in Bearded Ladies programs.
- Management of Staff and Contractors: The ED will set deadlines and clear expectations for a small team and hold staff accountable to those expectations with care and clarity. They will hire and supervise The Bearded Ladies’ administrative staff and oversee a Communications Manager, an Operations Manager, a Staff Producer, a Production Manager, and an Associate Artistic Director, as well as ongoing consultants and seasonal hires.
Who Are the Beards?
The Bearded Ladies Cabaret is an ever evolving cast of characters. We began as an ensemble of theater, music, and nightlife artists in 2010. Under the artistic vision of John Jarboe, we have built a network of artists, collaborators, and partners in Philadelphia, nationally, and overseas. We are a queer and trans led group of artists and administrators that draws inspiration from our cabaret ancestors, and seeks to honor and expand upon their legacy.
The following ingredients, values, and mission were written by the artistic leadership of The Beards: Founding Artistic Director John Jarboe, Associate Artistic Director Sally Ollove, and edited and pored over by stakeholders, staff, and our Associate Artist group.
The Bearded Ladies Cabaret is a queer arts organization that sits on your lap and sings you a story. Whether it’s an opera, a home-made cabaret, a musical walking tour, or a show on a truck, we employ song, spectacle, storytelling, and heart to welcome audiences into moments of joy, healing, and subversion. Through sharing our original pieces and creating bespoke platforms for performance at home in Philadelphia, nationally, and abroad, we nurture artistic connection for a community of misfits, rabble-rousers, chanteuses, and the people who love and need them.
Bearded values in how we make and share our work, and our values of Anti-Oppression
Care: As we live in both the process of artmaking and the systems that support that work, we aim to be human-centered, by which we mean prioritizing people (artists, technicians, audiences, and administrators) at every step of our work. We see our work as rooted in queer liberation, a liberation which does not exist without the liberation of all oppressed groups. Prioritizing liberation and heart in our art-making means creating a healthy space with systems of support. While we work and play together, we know harm can happen, even when moving with care. The Beards believe in actively acknowledging and being accountable for harm that happens in our spaces. We create environments where ensembles and teams have tools to navigate harm explicitly and without the onus being on the afflicted party.
Consent: The Beards believe in creating spaces where people’s agency over their bodies, their image, and their identity is respected and celebrated. We seek to creatively build consent into our performance and administrative spaces.
Transparency: The Beards are a mix of employees and contractors, freelancers, guest stars, steady relationships, and one night stands. The Beards believe that making work with care necessitates actively sharing the context of decision-making, whether it be financial, logistical, strategic or otherwise. We believe in giving our community the data to make informed decisions and creating an environment in which people feel empowered to ask for whatever information they believe will allow them to do their best work.
Clear and Authentic Communication: The Beards believe in the power of listening and clear communication. We take time to articulate shared values and expectations, adjusting as we go. We believe that work and play is better when there is room for everyone involved to contribute their voice.
Continual Learning: We believe in inquiry and questioning. We are investing time and resources in experimentation, and allowing individuals, ensembles, and our administrators the opportunities to grow.
Accessibility: We are on a journey towards making our spaces welcoming to everyone who wants to access them. We strive to make points of access that are meaningful, thoughtful, and created with care and to be proactive in creating welcoming spaces.
Spontaneous, Live, and Crafted: All of our work encourages the audience to be active participants in the creation of the performance. Interactivity yes, but also creating moments for them to notice their own responses and each other. We value and respect the craft of performance, giving time for scripting, rehearsing, and designing an experience so that we can take full advantage of the live encounter.
Tasty and Challenging: Our work involves spectacle, nostalgia, camp, pleasure, glitter, cardboard, really bad hair puns and discomfort, hard questions, silence, and space for reflection.
Queer: Queer as a verb, adjective, noun, adverb. We queer spaces, ideas, language. Many of us are queer. The constant is change and questioning.
Ambitious and Intimate: We love the hand-made, the human touch and the fireworks show. We aim to let ideas be as big as they want to be while centering the personal connections, the nuances that remind us that we are human.
Polyvocality and Lead Artistry: We create platforms for individual artists and make work as an ensemble. We value the dynamic tension between a singular vision and the group brain. Polyvocality means welcoming many different voices and centering processes and performances that allow them to be heard. Many of us are homos but we never want to be homogenous.
Can u host?: We love to flirt, partner, and grow in relationship with new artists, audiences, and organizations, sometimes for one night, sometimes for years. We also love and believe strongly in the art of good hosting, of feeding our audiences, artists, and technicians literally and figuratively with care and love.
The Power of Music Compels Us: Music is the cornerstone of our work. This music can be any style, can be original or recycled (with proper crediting). We use it as an essential element in all of our storytelling to give pleasure, to subvert, to access vulnerability and create reflective space.
Click here for a Video Intro from Artistic Director John Jarboe, an Audio Description of Job Posting, and a Video About Our Approach to Artist Care.
How to ApplyPlease submit a resume and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org. Submissions will be evaluated on a rolling basis with priority given to those received by October 31, 2022. After October 31, we will continue to accept applications on a rolling basis until the role is filled. Cover Letter: Please let us know briefly why you are interested in this position and in working with The Bearded Ladies. Cover letters may be submitted in writing or in video.
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