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Posted by Soulpepper Theatre Company

ORGANIZATION                               Soulpepper Theatre Company

ROLE                                                   Executive Director

LOCATION                                         Toronto

COMPANY WEBSITE             

REPORTS TO                                     Board of Directors

DIRECT REPORTS                           Director of Finance & Human Resources, Director of Marketing & Communications, Director of Partnerships & Development, and Executive Producer

TYPE                                                   Permanent, Full Time



We believe that stories can connect us, that they are vital to our understanding, compassion and knowledge, and that they can motivate us to make social change

Driven by a vision to share vital stories that connect us all, Soulpepper is Toronto’s award-winning live theatrical performing arts company that operates continually throughout the year. Located in the Distillery Historic District, Soulpepper has traditionally produced a season of more than 500 events, including innovative plays, concerts, musicals, festivals, and presentations. The company has received the most nominations in the general theatre division of the Dora Mavor Moore Awards.

In addition to producing the work of diverse visionary artists, Soulpepper offers a host of programs to nurture, develop, and include the creativity of everyone who wishes to engage with the theatrical, musical, and performing arts. The company provides these opportunities because it believes that the arts are for everyone, and that creative expression is a vital part of individual and community life. Soulpepper has built an international award-winning catalogue of audio and digital programming that has garnered listeners from over 50 countries. For five consecutive years (2015 to 2020), Soulpepper has been recognized at the New York Festivals Radio Awards.

Soulpepper has its current home in the Young Centre for the Performing Arts (YCPA), jointly planned and shared with George Brown College as a home for Toronto’s arts community and a destination for all theatre lovers. The YCPA provides a residence for the leading artists of today and the arts leaders of tomorrow in a 46,000 square foot unique facility of combined heritage and contemporary architecture with five flexible performance spaces, ranging from 80 to 300 seats: several rehearsal studios, classrooms, administrative offices, and a central atrium with café/bar.



As Soulpepper embarks on an exciting new era of theatrical performance and production, the company is seeking an experienced Executive Director (ED) to work in a co-leadership role with celebrated Artistic Director (AD) Weyni Mengesha to take this vibrant organization into the future. This is a unique opportunity to co-lead one of Canada’s most innovative, dynamic, and successful theatre companies.

Providing strategic leadership and financial oversight, the Executive Director will be responsible for all aspects of the organization’s operations, with a particular focus on producing, fundraising, administration, community engagement and strategic business planning. Reporting to the Board of Directors and working collaboratively with the Artistic Director, the ED will provide strategic and financial acumen to sustain the organization’s business and administrative operations.

Working collaboratively with the AD and the programming team, the ED will ensure the success of artistic programs and overall operations of the company. The scope of responsibility in this position will include providing staff leadership, guiding short- and long-term logistical efforts and leading financial planning. A dynamic and inspirational leader, the ED is a champion of equity, diversity, inclusion and anti-racism. The ED thrives in building positive and authentic relationships with staff, artists, Board members, audiences, donors, and community members to support Soulpepper’s strategic and operational goals.

As Soulpepper is the Managing Partner for the YCPA, the ED also reports to the Young Centre Board of Directors regarding the strategic, financial, and operational leadership of the YCPA.

The role is supported by an Executive Assistant, who is shared with the AD.



Organizational Leadership

  • Establish a strong, complementary and effective working relationship with the AD.
  • In partnership with the AD and the Board of Directors, lead the ongoing strategic planning process, with a compelling vision that inspires and motivates.
  • Together with the AD, ensure at least semi-annual evaluation of the strategic plan and report to the Board as to progress towards implementation, in addition to regular reporting at every Board meeting.
  • Review the administrative and organizational structure as the organization re mobilizes post COVID-19, and, in consultation with the Board, ensure that the appropriate human, financial, and operational resources are in place to achieve the plan.
  • In close collaboration with the AD and the Board, continue to implement a detailed plan to ensure that Soulpepper and YCPA are “best in class” in workplace safety, mutual respect, communication, and unwavering commitment to radical inclusion at all levels.
  • Develop and foster the highest standards of creativity, collaboration, and inclusion, as well as fiscal and operational excellence.
  • Provide inspirational leadership to staff and volunteers to achieve the goals of the strategic plan.
  • Provide guidance to the Director of Finance and HR with regards to ongoing Human Resources matters.
  • Mentor team leaders and direct reports. Monitor staff engagement and organizational culture.
  • The AD and ED are the public face and voice of Soulpepper, and therefore the primary advocates for the organization.
  • Participate in the “Group of 8” (the gathering of Toronto’s largest cultural institutions), on shared strategies and learnings, with particular reference to COVID recovery.
  • In collaboration with the AD, Board Chair, and others, represent Soulpepper with key local, provincial and national government and art council officials, corporate partners, donors, members, patrons, and other relevant sectors including public and private speaking opportunities.
  • Establish a strong and valuable working relationship with the Board Chair and members of the Board of Directors, including its committees.

Financial Oversight

  • Develop an overall financial strategy for the organization, in consultation with the Director of Finance and HR and the Board, that provides funding to advance the strategic plan and the artistic vision, while building an appropriate level of reserves.
  • Oversee a financial planning process that projects company budgets at least three years forward, and work with the AD to develop artistic programming and related budgets that allow artistic risk-taking, development of new work and emerging artists, and strong community engagement, all within a sustainable financial framework.
  • Oversee management of annual cash flow, key banking relationships, and capital expenditures, in close collaboration with the Director of Finance and HR and the Chair of the Finance and Operations Committee.
  • In conjunction with the Director of Finance and HR and the Chair of the Finance and Operations Committee, prepare appropriate regular financial reporting for Board review.


  • Collaborate with the AD and Executive Producer to ensure that Soulpepper’s program both delivers upon the organization’s strategic priorities and meets its financial targets within a reasonable risk profile.
  • Ensure that the organization is developing appropriate partnerships, nationally and internationally, with which to deliver upon its creative ambitions.
  • Further Soulpepper’s contribution to the cultural sector’s response to the climate crisis, continuing to position the company as a leading voice on this issue, with a commitment to creative and strategic programming (e.g., The Green Sessions) that champions a progressive message.
  • Liaise with other similarly focused organizations to ensure sector-wide collaboration and the delivery on shared high impact goals.
  • Support the Executive Producer with co-production negotiation and contracting.


  • Provide leadership to the Director of Partnerships and Development in the creation of fundraising strategies that ensure alignment with the artistic vision and strategic plan, while growing long-term, sustainable revenue.
  • Generate and steward relationships with institutional, corporate, and individual funders, including identifying and securing new funding sources and partnerships.
  • Work in partnership with the Director of Partnerships and Development to refresh and renew Soulpepper’s fundraising relationships with government agencies, trusts, and foundations in Canada. Develop and maintain close working relationships with their representatives, and staff.
  • Work closely with the Board’s Development Committee and the staff development team to cultivate, steward, and develop key donor and sponsor relationships and opportunities.
  • Support the development of a comprehensive cultivation plan for donors, including younger philanthropists, diverse communities, foundations and corporations.
  • Work to expand the donor network to new communities as Soulpepper progresses its mission to create a space for vital stories that connect us all.
  • Ensure robust methods of accounting for, and reporting on, project-specific funding.

Marketing & Communications

  • Provide leadership to the Director of Marketing and Communications to maintain fresh and relevant branding for the company and utilize both traditional methods and innovative digital strategies and analytics to reach and engage new and diverse audiences.
  • Ensure communication protocols internally and externally that both serve Soulpepper’s mandate and work to promote awareness and growth of the organization.
  • Promote Soulpepper’s overall strategies to develop audiences and engage in communities as outlined in the strategic plan and identify key relevant performance metrics.
  • Collaborate with the Director of Marketing and Communications in developing and implementing a tactical plan to achieve the goals set out to secure budgeted results for subscriptions, single ticket and school sales using best practices in all areas to maximize the patron experience.


  • Work closely with the Board Chair to ensure the timely and efficient administration of Board meetings, including the preparation of advance reading material and the keeping of minutes.
  • Act as Company Secretary, overseeing the administration of the Annual General Meeting.
  • Lead the preparation and delivery of the annual Board “away day,” liaising with the Chair and senior team as necessary.
  • Oversee reporting to, and administration of, the Finance and Operations Committee, the Governance and Nominating Committee, the HR Committee and the Development Committee, and any ad hoc committees, liaising with the committee chairs and appropriate senior manager as necessary.
  • Oversee the reporting to, and administration of, the GBSP Board, liaising with the Director of Finance and HR as needed.
  • Lead the process of Board on-boarding, in partnership with the chair of the Governance and Nominating Committee.
  • Create Board engagement opportunities for all Board members, in collaboration with Board Chair, Vice-Chairs and committee chairs.
  • Liaise with Board champions on their areas of contribution to the company.

The Young Centre for the Performing Arts – Organizational Leadership and Governance

  • Develop and foster the highest standards of creativity, collaboration, and inclusion, as well as fiscal and operational excellence.
  • In collaboration with the staff team, continue to implement a detailed plan to ensure that Soulpepper and YCPA are “best in class” in workplace safety, mutual respect, communication, and unwavering commitment to radical inclusion at all levels.
  • Provide inspirational leadership to staff and volunteers to achieve the goals of the organization.
  • Ensure the smooth operational running of the YCPA, liaising with George Brown College, staff, and volunteers.
  • Liaise with George Brown College regarding our joint residency in the building to ensure the needs of both partners are being addressed and met.
  • Report to the Board of GBSP on operational delivery and financial position.
  • Liaise with the Distillery Historic District on issues relating to the building, its operational upkeep and lease, and lead lease renewal negotiations ahead of its 2024 renewal.
  • Oversee the upcoming capital project, partially funded through the Investing in Canadian Infrastructure Project, ensuring good project management, appropriate financial and funder reporting and the timely achievement of the $750,000 partnership funding target.
  • Negotiate union agreements with IATSE 58, and IATSE B-173 (in-house technicians, and Front of House, Box Office and Café staff).
  • Act as Company Secretary, overseeing the administration of the Annual General Meeting.
  • Champion the YCPA as a vibrant year-round cultural destination for residents, visitors, and community/industry partners.


  • Alignment with Soulpepper’s mission, vision and values
  • A strong track record of inclusive, strategic leadership, collaboration, and team-building.
  • Experience in developing and executing a strategic plan in collaboration with the senior leadership team and Board.
  • Experience of theatre programming, and an ability to add a balance of financial, operational and creative perspective to a planning conversation.
  • Deep understanding of the business side of the performing arts, including producing, marketing, venue management, subscription and single-ticket sales, pricing/scaling tactics, and artist and labour relations. Experience with digital productions, marketing and communications would be an asset.
  • Demonstrated success in achieving ambitious fundraising growth over a sustained period of time.
  • Experience in fundraising with a focus on individual giving, foundations, corporate sponsorships, and government funding, including demonstrated success with building and maintaining donor relations.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of Canada’s diversity, and experience with being inclusive of people from diverse backgrounds.
  • Demonstrated experience in budgeting and financial forecasting.
  • Proven ability to successfully develop and implement short- and long-term business plans.
  • Knowledge of theatre activity locally, nationally and internationally is an asset.
  • Excellent stakeholder management and relationship-building skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage existing and develop new strategic partnerships.
  • Experience in the development of effective strategies and tactics to ensure a continuous drive for diversity, equity, inclusion, and mutual respect throughout the organization.
  • Outstanding communication and presentation skills. Ability to speak and write persuasively and serve as a spokesperson for the company.
  • Demonstrated experience working with, and reporting to, and facilitating active engagement opportunities for, a senior-level, highly experienced Board of Directors.


  • A dynamic leader with a passion for excellence, and a demonstrated ability to inspire colleagues and stakeholders.
  • Highly collaborative. A consensus builder with the ability to delegate, inspire and manage.
  • Strong organizational management skills, detail-oriented and strategic, creative, entrepreneurial and disciplined.
  • Strong interpersonal skills: unquestioned integrity, demonstrable respect for colleagues and stakeholders, and the ability to build trust through consistently open and honest communication across all levels of the company.
  • Demonstrated understanding of and proven commitment to the values of equity, inclusion, and diversity in every facet of the operation and artistic practice of a theatre company.
  • Demonstrated commitment in co-leadership; able to collaborate with Soulpepper’s AD to support the development and execution of the organization’s artistic vision and goals.
  • A strong talent manager who invests in skill building, celebrates success, and is an open and accessible coach and mentor.
  • A practical, calm and creative problem solver and strategic thinker, with the ability to react nimbly to the unexpected.
  • A creative thinker who supports artistic excellence at the highest level.


$180,000.00 with health benefits


Soulpepper is an organization committed to pursuing Radical Inclusion. We encourage applications from Indigenous, Black, Persons of Colour, Trans, and Disabled persons.

Soulpepper is committed to reflecting the diversity of our community and our country.   As an equal opportunity employer, we welcome and encourage submissions from individuals, with proper credentials, of all genders, cultures, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, and abilities.

Soulpepper is committed to providing accommodations for persons with disabilities in all parts of the hiring process.  Soulpepper invites candidates who may require assistance during the application/ hiring process, to let us know and we will work with them to meet their needs.

We encourage Canadians of all backgrounds to apply.

Soulpepper thanks all candidates for their interest, however, will only contact those selected for interviews.

Please submit your application by emailing your cover letter and résumé to, no later than Friday, November 12th, 2021.

View the full job posting here.

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