jonathan west will be posting video of the meeting throughout the day.
full audio of the skylight meeting in catalano square this morning.
(hat tip fred pike)
this seems key, to me. from this morning's discussion. board president terry kurtenbach states the skylight cannot afford a full-time artistic director. the question the comes, can the company afford a part-time artistic director? in his answer, kirchenbach claims the following:
"That is a very fair question. And you know, that is part of the issue that we probably didn't fully consider. However there were options. This is not the circumstance that came to, you know, the position...that came to the individual out of the blue. There were discussions. There were options."this would seem to suggest that bill theisen was given options to remain in an artistic director position, in something other than a full time basis. this has been disputed again and again by theisen.
dillner's opening statement:
"For those of you who don't know me, I'm Eric Dillner, managing director of the Skylight.12:28 pm:
I think we're all here for the same reason. You all love the Skylight, I love the Skylight, we all have loved it for many different lengths of time. Many of you for your whole life, some of us for, ah, well, I'd say for the last ten years i've known about the Skylight, but the last year and a half, I've loved it, like you have, but for different reasons.
Our whole mission here, all of us, together, is to produce exciting, wonderful productions that our community at large can enjoy, and love, and celebrate a special occasion at that evening, have dinner, celebrate with a drink afterwords. We're all here to make that the best that it can be.
We have this terrible thing called the economy hurting us right now. We're all suffering from that. We are personally suffering from it, we're emotionally suffering from it. The Skylight is one of the most important things in our lives, to keep the doors open. We aren't here discussing whether...well, we are here to discuss how we're gonna take it forward, but we also have to completely understand that we're here to discuss how to keep the doors open..."
jonathan west: the message we got today, from the new board president, was that it is mostly "the artist's responsibility" to fix this problem. if they don't they are not being gracious. (full quote from kurtenbach coming.)
molly rhode: in his "opening statement" kurtenbach said he had been on the board six years, but doesn't know any of the artists.
and then there is this, from the earlier tuesdays emailer, summing up the meeting:
Kurtenbach: "You need to help us fix this."12:22 pm:
Dillner: "All of the people we lost have been replaced already."
Cabot: "Think of what you're doing."
Dillner: *interrupts Colin Cabot*
Kurtenbach: "The board knows what its doing."
Us: "Do you want to apologize for anything"
Kurtenbach: "Sorry for not telling you sooner."
Us: "Why should we trust you?"
the meeting has apparently concluded. working on getting audio. video should come later in the day. an emailer to tuesdays: "oh my god, it was a bloodbath."
radio silence. sorry. fyi, there is, i believe, video happening on the scene, so hopefully this is all being captured and will be online later today. (and no, dear christopher, i am not twittering this and live-blogging this. besides, much of milwaukee hasn't quite caught on to twitter yet.)
on a side note, this from damien jaques in this morning's journal/sentinel:
"[Artists] are not fast food employees who can be summarily shuttled in and out. Haughtily referring to them as a mob, as a Skylight board member reportedly did, reveals a stunning lack of understanding as well as a sickening arrogance."11:19 am:
actress molly rhode point blank asked dillner to please step down. dillner refused.
lighting designer kurt schnabel has withdrawn from next season. he was contracted to design both "barber" and "figaro." his resignation letter will be posted later in the day.
the discussion has become quite intense and probably too complicated to relay in a forum like this, says my source. (but we'll keep trying.)
dillner modifies his last statement. no, not all have been replaced. jamie johns is speaking. and, according to my source, "getting squelched."
there are now definitely over 100 people present.
eric dillner has just announced that he has an entire list of replacements for next season that he will release very soon. everyone has already been replaced.
just a reminder to readers: this is all very fluid. none of the information here is in quotes. these are rough ideas of what is going on.
my source is suddenly very quiet.
kurtenbach is talking about the process that took place at last night's board meeting, arguing it was fair, and the community should participate out of a sense of obligation. (these are not quotes.) in a democracy, some win, some lose.
dillner speaks. an apology. west asks why he should be trusted. kurtenbach then explains why the board has been slow in reacting, and he apologizes on behalf of the board and asks for understanding.
the hastily called meeting of skylight opera theatre artists, colin cabot, and eric dillner is underway in milwaukee's catalano square, just south of the skylight's home in the broadway theatre center. reports of 100-120 people in attendence.
new board president terry kurtenbach spoke at length about his fairly short history with the skylight, which began with the first show he saw there, "floyd collins." cabot spoke for a few moments, and now jonathan west is posing questions on behalf of the artists.