The Garfield Center for the Arts Board of Trustees is pleased to announce the selection of Steven Arnold as the Garfield Center’s new Executive Director. After an extensive search, the board recently voted unanimously to offer the position to Arnold. Arnold brings with him more than 25 years of extensive arts administration, set design, lighting and tech, directorial and acting experience including over 70 theatrical productions.
Mel Rapelyea, Vice President, Garfield Center for the Arts Board of Trustees said “We are destined to bring a variety of art productions to the Garfield that appeal to the diversity in our community. Steve’s experience and familiarity with this area, we feel, will bring us closer to this goal which reflects our mission.”
Arnold is very familiar with the Eastern Shore theatre community as he was formerly the Executive Director at Church Hill Theatre. During his time there, he directed 2008’s Once on this Island, 2009’s Triumph of Love and 2010’s The Eight: Reindeer Monologues and Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol. He is probably most remembered for the highly successful production of The Rocky Horror Show also in 2010.
Arnold hopes to continue his past efforts to connect with the arts community, share resources and build relationships between producing organizations and to bring new collaborations and cooperations to the Garfield and local arts community.
Arnold has worked in the field of theatre and community arts at a number of venues before and following his time at Church Hill Theatre including Woodford Theatre in Kentucky and The Mansfield Playhouse in Ohio. Originally born in Dayton, Ohio, and a high school graduate of Severna Park Senior High School, in Severna Park, Maryland, he holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre degree from The Ohio State University.
As a co-founder of Live Playwrights’ Society (with Lucia Foster and Mark Sullivan), Arnold continued to participate and premiere original works in the Garfield’s annual Short Attention Span Theatre 10-minute play festival, even from afar.
“The idea of coming back to the Eastern Shore and reconnecting with its passionate and talented Arts community is a dream come true for me,” Arnold said. “Of all the places I’ve lived in and pursued my work in the Arts, my time on the Eastern Shore felt most like home. And to come back to work on behalf of the Garfield Center for the Arts, an organization I have long respected and admired, is even more exciting. It’s wonderful to return to a community that I know and love, but to be a new leader in the Garfield’s long and distinguished historical and cultural heritage is icing on the cake.”
Along with his Executive Director responsibilities, Arnold will continue to spearhead the Garfield’s highly regarded Playmakers’ Summer Theatre Camp. Growing the Garfield’s volunteer base, expanding community outreach, and building strong relationships with other leading arts organizations will also be a priority.
Arnold, who now resides in Chestertown, began work at the Garfield on January 6. The Garfield Board will hold a “Meet & Greet” from 5-8pm on February 7 during Chestertown’s First Friday to introduce Steve Arnold and highlight volunteer opportunities at the Garfield.
“I’ve always believed that volunteerism is the life-blood of non-profit organizations and the friendships and camaraderie formed make the theatre a home for everyone – so please come join us!” says Arnold.
About The Garfield Center for the Arts at the Prince Theatre
The Garfield Center for the Arts is located at 210 High Street in the Arts & Entertainment District of historic Chestertown, Maryland. Our mission is to invigorate the cultural life of our community by nurturing, celebrating and supporting arts and artists through performance and education.
Since its inception in 2002, the Prince Theatre Foundation has enjoyed success in various community endeavors:
Producing top of the line theatrical and musical productions such as Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, My Fair Lady, Short Attention Span Theatre, The 39 Steps, Mister Roberts, Love, Loss and What I Wore, Sylvia, Sweeney Todd, Animal Crackers, Miracle on 34th Street and most recently Annie: The Musical. Providing quality educational, enriching experiences in the arts for children and adults, such as Playmakers’ Summer Camp, Hedgelawn multi-cultural performance series, MUSICAMP and our monthly programs Open Mic Night, Live Playwrights’ Society and the newly formed Improv Group. The Garfield Center for the Arts collaborates with Kent County Schools to provide enrichment opportunities for elementary, middle and high school students through our Spring and Fall Educational Outreach Program, featuring a field trip opportunity each season.
Partnering with over a dozen community organizations for fundraising and other events that benefit us all.
Both the theatre, and the foundation that calls it home, are recognized and valued as a unique community center for the arts on the Upper Eastern Shore.
To learn more about the GCA, visit www.garfieldcenter.org, like us on Facebook (facebook.com/garfieldcenterforthearts) or follow us on Twitter (twitter.com/GarfieldCenter) or Instagram (instagram.com/garfieldcenterforthearts).
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