ECA Art News Briefs

BlackRock Center for the Arts Announces New Executive Director, Alyona Ushe

The Board of Trustees of BlackRock Center for the Arts announces its new Executive Director, Alyona Ushe, who will join the Center on November 13, 2017.  Ms. Ushe returns to the greater Washington area after having worked for the New Orleans Opera Association, and more recently in South Florida, where she led the development of multi-arts facilities in collaboration with local government, foundations, and other funding streams. Ms. Ushe began her arts management career in 1995 in Arlington, Virginia as Founder and Executive Director of Classika Theater, a diverse theater company and performing and visual arts academy.

“͞We are delighted to have Alyona’s experience, energy, and most of all, her enthusiasm put to work as BlackRock celebrates its 15th year of bringing arts to Montgomery County and the Washington metropolitan area” said Melane Kinney Hoffmann, Chair of the Board of Trustees at BlackRock. She continued, “We believe Alyona’s leadership and passion for the arts will help BlackRock further engage the community and guide the Center into the future of exciting opportunities.”

Ms. Ushe will oversee all operations at BlackRock, including its series of performances and workshops on three stages; a robust arts education program including dance, theater, music, and visual arts; an award-winning art gallery; and various community outreach and partnership programs.

Lisa Bethel, a member of the Board of Trustees who chaired the five-person Search Committee, said “We knew when we first connected with Alyona she would be a good fit for BlackRock. The Search Committee interviewed many candidates, and Alyona’s experience was a perfect match for our needs.”

“I am honored to be joining the exceptionally skilled and dedicated team at BlackRock Center for the Arts.  The 15th anniversary milestone underscores the outstanding job that the Board of Trustees and its staff have done in fostering this cultural gem. Together, we will now build upon the success of this great organization and enhance this beautiful facility’s reputation as a beacon for cultural creativity and learning.”

ABOUT BLACKROCK: Opened in 2002, BlackRock Center for the Arts is a non-profit organization housed in a multi-arts facility in Germantown, Maryland, providing professional performing arts, visual arts and arts education to the region. BlackRock’s performing and visual arts programming serves the dual purpose of supporting regional talent and bringing national touring artists to our community. BlackRock presents programming that includes jazz, classical, popular, and folk music; plus dance, children’s theater, comedy and film. There are three performance venues: the 210-seat Mainstage Theater, 150-seat Studio Theater, and the outdoor stage with lawn seating for more than 500 audience members, where free summer concerts are held.

BlackRock’s art gallery presents juried and invited exhibitions that are free and open to the public. Workshops, master classes, and meet-the-artist receptions are offered several times per year.  The education program offers approximately 80 arts classes per week to more than 500 students per session, as well as afterschool outreach programs in additional locations around the county.

In addition to programming, BlackRock is a resource for the community as a rental facility for private and corporate events, meetings, and receptions; each year the center hosts  approximately 100 rentals.

BlackRock Center for the Arts exists to inspire the community to experience, engage, and explore the arts. In its active pursuit to make the arts central to the lives of Washington metropolitan area residents, BlackRock is committed to providing quality programs that advance life-long participants in the arts.

(via BlackRock Center for the Arts. Photo courtesy of BlackRock Center for the Arts.)