The Alliance Theatre this week promoted general manager Mike Schleifer to managing director, a position that has gone unfilled since 2009.


Schleifer joined the Midtown company in March 2014, after a 13-year run at Baltimore’s Center Stage as associate producer, production manager and resident stage manager, among other jobs. Before that he was the production manager at Playwrights Horizons Theater School at New York University, and company manager and casting director at the Hangar Theater in Ithaca, N.Y.

He began his career as a stage manager in New York , involved with productions at the Public Theatre, Lincoln Center Theater, Second Stage and Playwrights Horizons, among others. He and his wife, theater director and educator Laura Hackman, have two sons.

While Schleifer’s title changes, his responsibilities remain much the same. As managing director he becomes artistic director Susan V. Booth‘s partner — she overseeing the artistic side of things; he crunching numbers, handling contracts and watching the bottom line.


“The Alliance has a pretty extraordinary few years on the horizon as we complete a new building design, move off-campus for 12 plays in 12 venues and return to a gorgeous new home for our 50th anniversary,” Booth said in a statement. “It will be a time that requires all of us to be at the very top of our game.”

The Alliance has one season (2016/17) left in its current Woodruff Arts Center space. It will spend the 2017/18 season off-campus as renovations take place — a season it’s framing as a “movable feast” — and return to a new venue for the 2018/19 season.

“The Alliance Theatre under Susan Booth’s leadership regularly reinvents the wheel in how we educate, engage and entertain our local audience, while putting a loud and clear field-leading stamp on the national conversation,” Schleifer said in a statement of his own. “I look forward to the challenge that the next three seasons brings.”

The Alliance’s 2016/17 begins Tuesday with the opening of the world premiere family musical Pancakes, Pancakes!, based on the book and artwork of Eric Carle. The season, one truly worthy of a major regional American theater, includes 10 world premieres, four musicals and five shows by Atlanta playwrights.

About Kathy Janich

Kathy Janich is a longtime arts journalist who has been seeing, working in or writing about the performing arts for most of her life. She's a member of the Theatre Communications Group, the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas, Americans for the Arts and the National Arts Marketing Project. Full disclosure: She’s also an artistic associate at Synchronicity Theatre.

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