BOARD OF DIRECTORS (2016-2017)
Joel Klein is the executive director of Made in BC - Dance on Tour. Born on a wheat farm near Fox Valley, Saskatchewan, Joel began artistic studies in Calgary and moved to Vancouver to complete a degree at UBC School of Music (Opera). He continued for some years to tour the province and the country as a professional operatic baritone, singing roles for, among others, Vancouver Opera, Edmonton Opera, and City Opera Vancouver. He continues to sing professionally as an orchestral soloist, concert artist, and occasional fabulous drag superstar. Switching his primary endeavours to arts administration in 2009, he acted as Arts Umbrella’s registrar and manager of Student Services, and as credit counsellor and student advisor for the Vancouver Community College / Arts Umbrella Dance Diploma program from 2009-2011. Joel has been executive director of Made in BC – Dance on Tour since March 2011, during which time he has continued its successful touring program and more than doubled the scope of its community-engagement, residency and professional development programming.
Jessica Schneider joined the Massey Theatre Society as Executive Director in August of 2006. The Society operates and programs the historic Massey Theatre and the Anvil Centre Theatre in New Westminster. Prior to that Jessica spent eight years as General Manager of Vancouver’s award winning Firehall Arts Centre. Jessica has served on the boards of a broad array of national and regional artistic organizations including: PACT, battery opera performance, GVPTA and Royal City Musical Theatre. She was, for five years, a faculty instructor in the Arts and Entertainment Management Department at Capilano University teaching Financial Management in the Arts. Jessica’s devotion to the performing arts blossomed at an early age studying dance, drama and voice. The daughter of two professional actors and granddaughter of Gwen Pharis Ringwood, an early Canadian playwright, theatre is very much the family business. Her professional path emerged early as a teacher of dance and an entrepreneur founding a school of dance and companion dance company.
Kirsten Schrader has been the manager of the Arts and Culture Division at the Cowichan Valley Regional District since spring 2010. Her main duties are to manage the Cowichan Theatre and help nurture and develop the arts and culture community in the region. She moved to the Cowichan Valley from Vancouver where she was the Arts Coordinator for the City of Richmond. There she managed the city's Cultural Arts Centre, and helped plan many city festivals such as the Children's Arts Festival, New Asia Film Festival, Culture Days, Mayor's Arts Awards, Doors Open, and the Richmond Cultural Olympiad for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. Prior to that she held a position in the Public Programming department at the Vancouver Art Gallery and was the executive director of the Vancouver International Fringe Festival. Originally from Victoria, Kirsten has a post graduate degree in Art History with a minor in Languages and has lived and studied internationally. She currently shares her time between Victoria, the Cowichan Valley, and Calgary with her husband and two step daughters. Kirsten also serves as the Vancouver Island representative on the Board of Directors of the Alliance and on the BC Task Force for Culture Days.
Jill Baird has been curator of education and public programs at the UBC Museum of Anthropology since 1997. She led the development of innovative education and public programming collaborating with a range of Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists and communities, including Indigenous weavers and Kwakwaka'wakw Potlatch Chiefs. Her doctoral research focused on collaborating with Haida and non-Haida museum colleagues at the Haida Gwaii Museum at Ḵay Llnagaay, Skidegate, British Columbia. Dr. Baird was the project lead for MOA's Partnership of Peoples' major CFI Innovation grant and $54M Renewal Project from 2000 to 2007. She was the coordinating curator of a major contemporary art exhibition Safar/Voyage: Contemporary Arab, Iranian and Turkish Art. Dr. Baird teaches in the Master of Museum Education program in the UBC Faculty of Education. She was one of the co-developers of the program launched in 2011.
Rohit Chokhani is a Jessie award-winning mid-career arts curator, director and a cultural leader. Currently, he is the Artistic Director for Diwali In BC based out of Vancouver, BC. Rohit was awarded the prestigious Jessie Richardson Theatre Award in the Large Theatre Category for “Significant Artistic Achievement in Expanding the Diversification of Vancouver Theatre” in 2017 and was also nominated for the “Vancouver Now Representation and Inclusion Award” for his leadership in expanding the representation of cultural diversity. Prior, he was the Artistic Associate/Digital Theatre Producer for Bard on the Beach 2016/17, Producer for Diwali Fest (2013-2017), Producer in Residence at the National Arts Centre - English Theatre 2015/16, General Manager for Touchstone Theatre 2013/14 and for urban ink productions 2012/2013. He is the co-founder for Monsoon Festival of Performing Arts and recently launched a sector development initiative called Project SAT (South Asian Theatre project) to create a network for developing, touring, producing and presenting national and international South Asian themed theatre projects in Canada. He is one of the most sought after multicultural voices nationally in Canada and internationally. He serves as a board member for Alliance for Arts and Culture in BC, Canada as well as a member of the culturally diverse committee at PACT (Canada). He has served on numerous diversity-related panels and participated at festivals such as IMPACT Festival (Ontario), Prismatic Festival (Halifax), Magnetic North Festival (Ottawa), BC Cultural Roundtable conference called re: generation, Making a scene conference and was invited to the Canadian Arts Summit-2017, Culture NEXT in Charlottetown. Rohit grew up in Bombay (Mumbai), home to Bollywood, the centre of the Indian subcontinent’s vibrant performing arts industry. He is highly passionate about making performing arts equitable and sustainable.
Dani Fecko is founder and president of Fascinator Management, an agency, production house, and consultancy based in Vancouver, BC. Fascinator is driven by the values of community connection, rigorous art making and creative place-making, and currently represents Company 605, The Chop Theatre, Delinquent Theatre, Hong Kong Exile, Ivan Coyote, Neworld Theatre, and Theatre Replacement. Dani has a long history working in contemporary theatre in Vancouver. She was managing producer of Boca del Lupo and spent four years as associate curator at PuSh Festival. Dani trained as a stage manager, working for the Vancouver 2010 Olympics, Vancouver Opera, Vancouver Playhouse locally, and Theatre Replacement, Neworld Theatre, and more across Canada and Europe. She has managed tours across North America, Mexico, and Europe with Rimini Protokoll. Dani has sat on theatre boards in Vancouver, was on the Vancouver planning committee for the Western Arts Alliance, and is a proud member of the development committee of the International Society of the Performing Arts (ISPA). She is part of the 2016-2018 Leadership Fellows Program through APAP. Dani is a graduate of Studio 58 and lives in Vancouver with her husband and their pet fish, Dot.
Darrin Morrison is the director/curator of West Vancouver Museum. For over 25 years Darrin has worked as a senior museum/gallery professional in Canada. He possesses extensive administrative, curatorial and collections experience with an in-depth understanding of all aspects of managing and operating large and small cultural institutions. He was exhibition coordinator at the Art Gallery of Mississauga before undertaking a professional development internship at the Museum of Anthropology at University of British Columbia where he then worked as a project manager in design and conservation for fifteen years. In his role with the West Vancouver Museum Darrin has led the museum through a process of renewal, implementing a broader mandate and program emphasizing art and architecture and is currently working with a Board on the development of a new facility. He sits on the advisory committee of the University of British Columbia’s School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. He is an Associate of the Ontario College of Art (now OCAD University), completed courses in museum studies at the University of British Columbia and, in 2012, and received a certificate in Leadership Development from the British Columbia Institute of Technology.
Paul Sontz is Tourism Vancouver’s manager of cultural tourism and Tickets Tonight, where he oversees communications, works with event promoters, creates new partnerships, builds customer relations and markets Tickets Tonight. Paul launched Tickets Tonight—Vancouver’s community box office and the only same-day half-price ticket outlet—ten years ago as a joint venture between Tourism Vancouver and the BC Alliance for Arts + Culture. As manager of cultural tourism, Paul works to build a stronger relationship between Vancouver’s arts and culture scene and its tourism industry. Paul’s prior experience includes working for Northwest Airlines, First Night Edmonton and The Works: A Visual Arts Festival. He currently serves on the Culture Days Task Force and was recently a part of the Metro Vancouver Regional Culture Committee. Paul is a member of INTIX, the International ticketing association, where he is a jurist on the awards committee and has led sessions at annual conferences. Paul has held various box office positions at the Shaw Festival and BASS Ticketing. He served on Playwright’s Theatre Centre’s board and the Edmonton Professional Arts Council board. Paul holds a BFA from Brock University in Drama and a MFA from the University of Calgary in Theatre Directing.
Amanda Shatzko is an international and intercultural communication scholar, creativity ambassador, and cultural diplomat. A professional artist, consultant, and director dedicated to contributing to humanity through leading collaborations, and assisting organizations and government to strive for excellence through socially responsible and artistic programs. Currently, she is elected board President for the Arts Council of the North Okanagan, Board Director for the Vancouver Branch of the United Nations Association in Canada, Board Director for the BC Alliance for Arts & Culture, and Vice-Chair to the Regional District of the North Okanagan’s Culture Plan Advisory Team. Ms. Shatzko has won numerous awards, grants, and scholarships for her projects, representing BC and Canada at conferences and events as a young Canadian leader. To date traveling and working abroad in over 25 countries for cultural and artistic initiatives.
Bryan Woo graduated from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and a concentration in Music Education. Prior to joining the Arts Club Theatre Company, Bryan was a researcher for the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games and facilitated trade missions for the National Research Council Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program. Combining his background in music and experience in business, Bryan joined the Arts Club in 2005 and is the Director of Sales & Marketing. Over his tenure, Bryan has focused on data-driven segmentation strategies to increase audiences and patron loyalty and improve the intrinsic impact of the art for both patrons and artists. Bryan is currently the President of the Greater Vancouver Professional Theatre Alliance.
Randy Joynt has been the Manager of External Affairs for the Royal and McPherson Theatres Society in Victoria BC since 2016. Prior to this, he was the Executive Director of Artspace in Winnipeg MB and the co-founder and General Manager of TRIP dance company in Winnipeg. Randy began his career as a contemporary dancer, performing with companies in Winnipeg, Ottawa and Montreal. Randy has a keen interest in cultural policy and arts advocacy; and has lead strategic planning processes, governance reviews and operational capacity building initiatives for a number of arts organizations. He has been the Vice-President and advocacy committee Chair of the Canadian Dance Assembly, the founding Chair of Manitobans for the Arts and the Treasurer of the Winnipeg Art Council. In 2010, Randy was awarded the Victor Martin Lynch-Staunton Award from the Canada Council for the Arts for his work in dance.
David Alexander oversees an integrated department at the Royal BC Museum and Archives that includes the archives, physical and digital access to collections and preservation and digital services and initiatives. David is responsible for the care of the archives collection, growth and maintenance of the museum’s collections management databases, the development of strategic partnerships and an array of related services. In his role, David has created a new digital sphere for the museum and archives by developing and maintaining secure, open-source, publicly accessible systems for managing and sharing BC’s cultural resources. David has a background in technology and culture and holds a Masters of Applied Communication degree with a specialty in digital communications. David is currently president of the BC Museums Association, Development Chair of the Greater Victoria Public Library System and Advocacy Chair for the Association of Canadian Archives.
Nina Buddhdev consults with an international portfolio of classical artists, projects, seed initiatives and organizations who all seek to relate creative excellence to an ever-changing society for a richer sense of world culture. She is the founder of The Bandish Network, a west coast platform for Canadian and visiting classical Indian artists, students, organizations and presenters. Following the BC Culture days 2015 Ambassador project, ‘Traditional India Series,’ Nina founded The TriCity India Heritage Network, a community resource for south Asian interests and families in the Tri-City areas. She has a prolific background in the UK and is recognized for the Asian Music Circuit programs including the BBC Indian Proms at the Royal Albert Hall featuring legendary maestros of classical traditions. As a freelancer, Nina specializes in project visioning, partnerships, classical art research, critical evaluations, project regeneration, artist coaching, project advisory and ghost content.