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October 22, 2010

Michael Ross returns to Center Stage as consultant during transition period

Michael Ross, former managing director of Center Stage, will return temporarily to the company in the capacity of management consultant on December 1 to help with the transition to new leadership.

Current managing director Debbie Chin is leaving in December; longtime artistic director Irene Lewis will step down at the end of the 2010-11 season.

Ross, who served at Center Stage 2002-2008 and enjoyed great popularity inside and outside the organization, is currently managing director of the Westport Country Playhouse in Connecticut. He plans to stay with that company, but agreed to lend a hand at Center Stage.  

In a statement released late Thursday, the theater's board president Jay Smith said:

“Michael is a respected national arts leader who understands the inner workings of Center Stage ... We have a terrific and experienced staff in place and are highly confident about our ability to manage the organization after Debbie’s departure. However, Michael, as an additional resource who knows us well, will ensure a smooth transition to new leadership.”

A committee, headed by Center Stage trustee and Maryland Film Festival director Jed Dietz, is searching for a new artistic director.


Posted by Tim Smith at 7:10 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Center Stage, Drama Queens

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About Tim Smith
Born and raised in Washington, D.C., I couldn't help but develop a keen interest in politics, but music, theater and visual art also proved great attractions. Music became my main focus after high school. I thought about being a cocktail pianist, but I hated taking requests, so I studied music history instead, earning a B.A. in that field from Eisenhower College (Seneca Falls, N.Y.) and an M.A. from Occidental College (Los Angeles). I then landed in journalism. After freelancing for the Washington Post and others, I was classical music critic for the Sun-Sentinel in South Florida, where I also contributed to NPR. I've written for the New York Times, BBC Music Magazine and other publications, and I'm a longtime contributor to Opera News. My book, The NPR Curious Listener's Guide to Classical Music (Perigee, 2002), can be found on the most discerning remainder racks.

I joined the Baltimore Sun as classical music critic in 2000 and, in 2009, also became theater critic, giving me the opportunity to annoy a whole new audience. In 2010, my original Clef Notes blog expanded to encompass a theatrical component -- how could I resist calling it Drama Queens? I hope you'll find both sides of this blog coin worth exploring and reacting to; your own comments are always welcome and valued (well, most of them, at least).

Think of this as your open-all-hours, cyber green room, where there's always a performer or performance to discuss, some news to digest, or maybe just a little good gossip to share.
Note: Tim Smith now writes about the fine arts at This blog will be kept in place as an archive for an indefinite period. Please visit the new location to get the latest Mid-Atlantic arts coverage.
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