Two of Synchronicity Performance Group’s co-producing artistic directors, Michele Pearce and Hope Mirlis, are stepping down, leaving Rachel May as sole producing artistic director.
The theater company, which focuses on producing women-focused plays and conducting outreach programs to empower at-risk girls, was founded in 1997 by May, Pearce, Mirlis and Julie Oshins, who left the group soon after. For nearly 10 years, May, Pearce and Mirlis handled the day-to-day operations as a trio, taking the theater from a scrappy group with a $35,000 budget and a 300-person mailing list to a nationally recognized and funded regional theater with a $350,000 budget. In addition to a popular family series and an edgier adult series of plays, the group produces a SheWrites festival of new work, an annual Women in the Arts panel luncheon, Playmaking for Girls workshops with detention center youth, and summer acting camps for kids. Last year’s NEA-funded documentary theater piece Women + War was profiled in American Theater magazine.
Pearce and Mirlis both plan to stay involved with the group. Pearce intends to spend more time with her family and pursue a career as a professional fundraiser. Mirlis, a popular local actress, is considering pursuing acting work in another city.
As the theater moves into its 10th anniversary season, staff will be hired to handle Pearce and Mirlis’ workload. For the first time, the theater’s season will run from September to May instead of on the calendar year. A full season of adult and family series plays, special events and programs will be announced in the spring.
Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution