Long-time development consultant to the Antaeus Company Miki Shelton has been chosen to fill the newly created position of executive director. Managing Director Kathleen Eads moves to Jamestown, New York, where she will serve as executive director of the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts.
Two years ago, Antaeus began to explore a model of rotating, shared artistic leadership, a model which has been successful and recently resulted in an Ovation award nomination for “Best Season.” To better support this artistic structure, the company has created the position of executive director to bring a strong business, entrepreneurial and visionary hand to partner with the artistic directors.
“As Antaeus leans towards the future, we're creating an organizational structure that is agile and can support our vision as we change and grow,” commented Shelton. “I believe this company is uniquely positioned to break new ground in how theaters operate and create more meaningful relationships with their audiences and the larger community. As Antaeus' first executive director, I look forward to helping to lead this company to even greater success.”
Shelton has been working with Antaeus as development consultant since 2011. With close to 20 years of experience in leading and managing nonprofit organizations, and a larger career that has straddled everything from theater, dance, and music to creative writing, arts administration and experience design, she has provided fundraising, brand development and strategic planning expertise for a variety of organizations, including the YMCA of Metropolitan Los Angeles, Las Virgenes Unified School District, Los Angeles Master Chorale, Challengers Boys & Girls Club and Ojai Music Festival, among others. Shelton has founded theater companies in New York, Chicago and at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and has worked in a variety of capacities including artistic director, director of development, actor, writer, director and choreographer. She holds an MFA equivalent from the American Repertory Theater Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University.
“We are thrilled that Miki has offered to step forward and take on an even greater leadership position within the company,” said Antaeus co-artistic directors Bill Brochtrup, Rob Nagle and John Sloan in a joint statement. “We’re grateful to Kathleen for her tireless work on behalf of the company during her two-and-half-year tenure. She was instrumental in building a strong infrastructure at Antaeus. She and Miki worked closely together, so we’re looking forward to a smooth transition.”
The Antaeus Company exists to create a family of artists and audiences and is dedicated to exploring stories with enduring themes. Taking their company name from the Titan who gained strength by touching the Earth, Antaeus members — many of whom are familiar to film and television audiences — gain creative strength by returning to the wellspring of their craft: live theater performances of great classical plays. Unique among 99-seat theater companies in L.A., Antaeus is known for “partner casting.”
In all Antaeus productions, two equally talented actors collaborate on every role, working together throughout the rehearsal process and enriching the creative experience. Audiences, who rarely see an understudy, frequently return to see the same play in the hands of an equally excellent but very different set of actors.