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FN2N production photo hi-res puppeteers



The Board of Directors of the Old Trout Puppet Workshop seeks an intrepid individual to take on the role of Executive Director and work with the Artistic Core to lead the organization into its next stage of growth.


The Old Trout Puppet Workshop is an artist-driven company devoted to reimagining the art of puppetry. For over twenty years, we’ve been creating art in a wide variety of media (theatre, opera, film, sculpture, paintings, books, digital projects, and music) and touring internationally. 


We are based in Calgary (Mohkintsis), on Treaty 7 Territory. We are a registered Alberta Society and Canadian Charity.  


Three founding members constitute the core creative ensemble, who work together as co-artistic directors. In the coming years, the Trouts are planning new works, including smaller-scale commissions and large-scale co-productions with multiple partners, while also completing a film project, and mounting several European tours, in addition to operating a workshop and rehearsal facility in southeast Calgary. We’re a busy company with a great deal going on, and our new executive director will be the hub at the centre of these many spokes, working with the artistic core to ensure the smooth and successful operation of the company, under the ultimate supervision of the board of directors. As such, the ED’s responsibilities are varied, and range from day-to-day operations to strategic management. Flexibility and an enthusiasm for learning new things are going to be vital, as well as great communication skills, and an ability to work independently as well as collaboratively. 


We’re a small organization, and everybody pitches in to make it work. The ED, in collaboration with the artistic core, oversees all aspects of the company, to make sure they are moving along smoothly. Sometimes tasks can be delegated, and sometimes they need to be handled personally, depending on what projects are currently in process, who’s involved, and who’s got headspace to take on extra responsibilities. The organization employs a variety of people on a per-project basis, including stage managers, performers, technical people, marketers, designers, bookkeepers, social media managers, composers, and so on; the ED and artistic core are ultimately responsible for making sure all these people are contracted, staying on budget, and performing their jobs according to expectation. 


Once the new ED is in place, we’ll work together as a team to determine how best to manage all the tasks on our collective plate, which may mean redistributing responsibilities amongst the existing staff, or by hiring help, or by any other ingenious method that gets it all done – which is to say, the exact job description will be created in collaboration with the new ED.


That said, there are a few key tasks that will be pretty central to the job:


1) Administration

The ED is the conduit for communications amongst the various wings of the company, including the artistic directors, agents, production managers, designers, producing partners, and the board of directors – they know what’s going on, and keep a finger on the pulse of everything the company is up to.



2) Financial Management

The ED takes care of all financial aspects of the company, including supervision, integration, management, reporting, and the overall fiscal health of the organization. The ED will prepare, in conjunction with the Artistic Core, the annual operating budget for the company for approval by the Board. (Bookkeeping could be subcontracted if that’s desirable.) 


3) Grants

The ED makes sure we’re taking advantage of available funding opportunities, working with the artistic core in all phases of grantmaking, from sourcing to conception to submission to execution to reporting.


4) Tour oversight

The ED manages the international touring operations of the company. This will be a primary focus of the position, entailing communications with agents, presenters, shippers, and touring staff, managing schedules and budgets, strategizing and grantmaking, and developing future opportunities.


5) Board of Directors Liaison

The ED reports to the Board of Directors and attends all board meetings as an ex-officio member, and as a key member of Board Committees such as Governance, Finance, Fund Development, Facilities, and Nominating Committees. The ED and artistic core work together in preparing and executing the annual Strategic Plan. 


There are also a few tasks that the ED might engage in directly, or might prefer to delegate to other staff or subcontractors, namely:


6) Marketing

The ED may oversee box office, audience development, marketing, public relations, and community outreach initiatives. Web design or social media skills would be great. 


7) Fund Development

The ED may undertake fundraising and sponsorship initiatives.


8) Facility Management 

The Old Trouts manage a space that we use for our own projects and also offer for community use, with long term relationships and short-term rentals to facilitate.  


9) Community Outreach

The Old Trouts strive to be a means of support to our community, and an organization that creates meaningful connections. Our new ED may invest energy in building  relationships and engagement.


10) The Old Trout Film Division

The Old Trouts have made several films, and are in the process of making another one.  Our new ED might want to invest energy in the realization of this or future projects.


The Old Trouts are committed to building a theatre community that is equitable, diverse, inclusive, and accessible, and where everyone is welcome. 

We have office space at the workshop, but we’re also open to discussing remote work arrangements. 

Additional languages would be a bonus.

Proficiency with office software is required, particularly including Word, Excel, cloud-based information exchange, and email programs. 


Salary Range: $55,000 to $65,000 depending on experience.

Interested applicants should send a cover letter and resume to:

with the subject header: ED Search Committee


Full-time position. Open until filled. 

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