Grand Rapids Civic Theatre makes leadership changes


The Grand Rapids Civic Theatre announced changes within its leadership ranks.

Allyson Paris transitioned into a new role as the artistic director. She was previously the associate director since 2015 when she joined the organization. As the artistic director, she will oversee all the program and educational initiatives of the theater, including productions and the School of Theatre Arts.

“Civic Theatre holds a special place in the hearts of our West Michigan community, and I’m proud and honored to be part of an organization committed to making the arts accessible to everyone,” Paris said. “As we approach the 100th anniversary of Civic, I look forward to working with our community to plot a course for the next 100 years.”

Bruce Tinker Photo by David Sparks

Bruce Tinker, who served as both the executive and artistic director since 1999, is now solely the executive director. He will oversee all the business functions of the theater including finances, community partnerships and the physical and facility needs of the theater, which includes capital improvements, stewardship of civic spaces, partnerships with vendors, contractors and others.

Ben Greene, who joined the Civic Theatre in 2019 as the director of marketing and engagement, will continue in his role. He will continue to oversee all marketing, communication and development functions of the theater, as well as the expanded supervision of the box office, front of house and audience experience functions.

Additionally, the Civic Theatre welcomed eight new staff members who will focus on

audience experience, customer service, education, and marketing and communications in 2021.

“It is my sincere hope that these changes will serve Civic Theatre well in the months and years ahead and will allow us to remain focused and recommitted to our mission of educating, entertaining and engaging our community through the theater arts,” Tinker said.

The Grand Rapids Civic Theatre will open its 2021-22 season with the musical “Once” from Sept. 17-Oct. 3.

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