Suitcase in Point

Suitcase in Point is a St. Catharines based multi-arts organization that desires to engage and excite the Niagara community with original performance and innovative cultural events that is for and about our community.

Looking for the extraordinary in the everyday, we provide audiences with unique perspectives on Canadian life and culture. We create, produce and present new artistic work in multiple disciplines to reflect on local issues in ways that encourage change, tolerance and self-awareness to cultivate a healthier, more connected community. To meet this aim, we:

  • Create and deliver original plays rooted in parody and satire
  • Produce an annual multi-arts festival called In the Soil Arts Festival, presenting new work from artists working in theatre, music, visual, media, literary and interdisciplinary arts and more
  • Provide arts-based workshops and mentorship for new-generation artists, youth and non-arts community members through AMP (Arts Mentorship Program)
  • Run a studio and intimate performance space in downtown St. Catharines



Job Description

THE OPPORTUNITY
SIP is seeking to hire a creative, collaborative spirit for the role of Artistic Director (AD), to lead the programming and production of our festival, comedy cabarets, original programming and events and arts mentorship initiatives. Working alongside the Managing Director, the AD carries the overall responsibility of setting the artistic direction and programming of the company and leads selection of all artistic staff members. In conjunction with the Managing Director, the AD is responsible to the Board of Directors for the execution of all artistic activities of the company as well as the financial and operational success of the company.


The Artistic Director (AD) works in partnership with the Managing Director (MD) and reports to the Board of Directors. The AD shares the role of Executive Director with the MD.

PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES 
The Artistic Director is responsible for interpreting the mission of the company in the development of all artistic programming. The creative leadership of the company will inspire others with a strong artistic vision and collaborative energy that supports productive work with artists, staff, volunteers and a wide range of community partners. The AD will be the primary public face of the company and is thus responsible for reflecting our values and priorities when speaking on behalf of the company.
The AD is responsible for the following:

  • Plan and execute an annual artistic season, including the In the Soil Festival, Scratch Nights, Comedy Cabarets and other original programming.
  • Establish effective and efficient processes to manage event planning and management, including the facilitation of production planning, marketing, communications and oversight of all event staff and volunteers.
  • Lead the Arts Mentorship Program, providing meaningful experiences for emerging artists and arts workers in tandem with staff and program partners, and identifying resources and partnerships to support the program.
  • Further develop the relationship with the SIP Founding Members, supporting the creation of original comedy cabarets and comedy video production by the members.
  • Cultivate and sustain artist relations through contract negotiations, resource management, communications and community engagement strategies.
  • Cultivate and sustain positive audience relations.
  • Develop long term artistic plans that build the company’s profile, audience and resource base.
  • Undertake evaluation of the company’s artistic and other success with the Managing Director, considering annual goals, mission and measurable outcomes.
  • Develop and implement outreach programs that facilitate the mission and priorities of the company.
  • Steward existing partnerships and build new community relations that serve the company’s mission, profile, credibility and financial health.


ADDITIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES 
The AD plays a critical role in the overall success of the company. Working with the Managing Director and staff, the AD will:

  • Support the MD in the development, implementation and review of strategic and business plans.
  • Provide artistic and creative program decisions and information in sufficient time to support effective marketing and outreach.
  • Work with marketing & communications staff on the development of marketing materials, including but not limited to graphics and videos.
  • Provide promotional copy as required.
  • Facilitate the collection of artist information for promotional use.
  • Participate in media interviews as required.
  • Attend all board meetings and board committee meetings as determined suitable with the board and MD.
  • Provide timely and relevant reports to the board of directors.
  • Support healthy board and committee membership, function and evolution.


STAFF SUPERVISORY/MANAGEMENT RESPONSIBILITIES 
The AD is responsible for the hiring, management, evaluation and oversight of:

  • 3 part-time staff – Arts Mentorship Program Director, Comedy Cabaret Coordinator, ITS Technical Director
  • 2 to 6 temporary contract staff hired for the ITS Festival and other casual events, including but not limited to an Artistic Associate Producer, technicians and interns, as available.


FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITIES 
The AD shares responsibility with the Managing Director for the financial health of the organization and shall undertake the following work related to this:

  • Work with the MD to prepare annual budgets and monitor monthly progress. Address shortfalls in a timely fashion through strategic adjustments of creative and operational plans as needed.
  • Present financial reports to the Board along with the MD. These will include an annual budget for approval as well as ongoing financial actuals.  If required, identify financial weaknesses or concerns to the board in a timely fashion.
  • Undertake operating and project grant writing with the MD, including but not limited to descriptive contributions and financial research for budget preparation.
  • Identify key opportunities to engage with existing or potential funders, sponsors and collaborators that can serve the company’s plans and priorities.
  • Support all fundraising activities and participate in identifying and seeking out other contributed income development as required.


WORK AREAS SUMMARY
The AD’s areas of responsibility have been estimated to be broken into the following percentages of time spent per area:

Primary Responsibilities:
Artistic Programming (35%)
Artistic Producing for Original Programs (Scratch Night, Cabarets, etc.) (25%)
Community Engagement (15%)
Additional Responsibilities
Marketing & Communications (10%)
Income Development (10%)
Board Relations (5%)

WORKING CONDITIONS AND ENVIRONMENT 
Suitcase in Point operates an office and studio space in downtown St. Catharines that is used for office, meeting, rehearsal and performance purposes. We support a hybrid work environment, with partial work-from home arrangements to be negotiated with the Managing Director. Staff presence in the SIP space is required to support various operational and artistic activities and the AD is jointly responsible with the MD for ensuring these times will be suitably covered. Our current office and studio are on the third floor of a building with no elevator.

The work of the Artistic Director requires flexible hours, and work on evenings and weekends. It is a part-time position with the exception of the month leading up to and including the In the Soil Festival, which will require full-time hours. 
 

Requirements:

KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS REQUIRED

Skills 

  • Artistic creation and/or producing and/or programming skills
  • Event planning and management
  • Grant writing and reporting
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Staff and volunteer leadership and training
  • Creative project budget management
  • Strong relationship building and stakeholder stewardship

Aptitude & Attitude

  • Forward-thinking artistic visioning
  • A collaborative, welcoming nature
  • Self-motivated, strategic thinker
  • Commitment to artist development and community engagement
  • Dedicated to the principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, and access to the arts
  • Passion for and knowledge of multiple artistic disciplines (i.e. theatre, music, film, and the visual arts and the arts festival scene)

Extras

  • Familiarity and knowledge of local, regional and/or national artists
  • Experience working with diverse artists including an understanding of the roles, relationships and dynamics of artists in a range of disciplines.
  • Fundraising experience.
  • Experience working in a not-for-profit setting, and with a board of directors.



Additional Info:

ABOUT SUITCASE IN POINT
Founded in 2001, Suitcase in Point (SIP) is a courageous ensemble of artists and producers who engage and excite the Niagara community with original multi-arts performances and events, including In the Soil Arts Festival and Suitcase in Point’s Comedy Cabarets. Through original work and collaborative community projects, they provide audiences with unique perspectives on contemporary life and culture. Suitcase in Point’s approach and their work aim to challenge perspectives and encourage change, tolerance, and self-awareness with an aim to promote a healthier, more connected community. Suitcase in Point nurtures new generation artists through arts mentorship and residency programs, provides studio space for development and rehearsal, and creates meaningful connections between emerging and established artists from Niagara and across Turtle Island.

Suitcase in Point is a St. Catharines-based arts organization that lives and works on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg, the Haudenosaunee, Wyandot peoples and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nations. This territory is covered by the Upper Canada Treaties and within the land protected by the Dish With One Spoon Wampum agreement. Today this gathering place is home to many nations and we offer our sincere gratitude to the original and continued stewards of this land, and to all nations, recorded and unrecorded, who take care of this land and have since time immemorial. 

Suitcase in Point recognizes a richly diverse society in Ontario and beyond; as well as a duty to act in a manner that promotes equity across race, gender identity, sexual orientation, economic position, creed, age, national origin, physical and mental abilities.  You can read our Policy to Promote a Culture of Anti-Racism, Anti-Harassment, and Equity here. 

Suitcase in Point is a St. Catharines-based arts organization that lives and works on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg, the Haudenosaunee, Wyandot peoples and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nations. This territory is covered by the Upper Canada Treaties and within the land protected by the Dish With One Spoon Wampum agreement. Today this gathering place is home to many nations and we offer our sincere gratitude to the original and continued stewards of this land, and to all nations, recorded and unrecorded, who take care of this land and have since time immemorial. 

How to Apply:

We invite interested individuals to apply by midnight on Sunday November 12, 2023 for consideration. Please submit applications to b[email protected]. Include your name in the subject line.

Applications must be submitted as a single pdf attachment including a letter of interest and CV. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please, no phone calls.

Letters of interest should include the following:

  • why you want to work with Suitcase in Point;
  • why you think the development of artists is necessary in this moment;
  • how do you envision yourself supporting artistic development for our stakeholders (arts enthusiasts, aspiring artists, professional artists)

Suitcase in Point Multi-Arts Company advocates equal opportunity for all employees and applicants for employment and is committed to diversity in the workplace. We are actively seeking submissions from candidates of all backgrounds, abilities, and ethnicities as we are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion within this selection process. 
 
Suitcase in Point Multi-Arts Company sincerely thanks all applicants for their interest in this position, however only those invited for an interview will be contacted.

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