How do you think about the life-cycle of your organization? How will it evolve over the next five, or ten years?
I think it will be more mature in many ways over time. I imagine it will be larger and more stable. Achieving a threshold of scale in terms of revenue will mean that we have successfully built a far greater diversity of income sources than we have now. That will create a sturdier base from which we can have an even greater impact on our community, and can continue to take risks, and be more innovative.
At some point in the future I imagine we can support a broader array of presentations, more works of scale, and larger site-based work. As more and more neighborhoods continue their remarkable development, we plan on growing the Fringe Festival right alongside them.
The world of cultural producers and distributors we live in is becoming less codified and category-based. And just as the museum world has brilliantly adopted performance, we aspire to program non-time-based art projects and presentations. We want to take opportunities for far more partnerships with our incredible colleague institutions here in Philadelphia, like Opera Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, Philadelphia Museum of Art, among many others. There may also be opportunities for the creation of additional product lines as well as strategic programming partnerships with the set of ever-growing and dynamic academic institutions in our region, including Drexel University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of the Arts.
What benefits does the Philadelphia region provide you that another region might not? How does it contribute to and influence your organizational practice and artistic programming?
Our city has become one of the most dynamic places I know. I have lived here for many years and it seems that there has never been this degree of development and growth in many sectors, especially in culture. There is a large and growing creative class and a smart and ambitious artist community. There is also an audience base that is increasingly sophisticated, curious, and interested in new, big art ideas and about our world beyond Philadelphia. This has led us to have more confidence in presenting foreign language work and, in general, more provocative, risk-taking work.