People and organizations on the move: KMFA and the Austin Circle of Theatres look for new homes, and Austin Theatre Alliance CEO Dan Fallon and KMFA Director of Broadcast Operations Randy Harriman leave their respective companies.
Theatre Alliance CEO Resigns
When the Paramount Theatre and State Theater Company merged two years ago, the boards of those two organizations wanted a chief executive officer in place to manage the union and establish an infrastructure for two theatres that would function as one. The man they hired for the job was Dan Fallon, an arts administrator with experience managing the Ford Center for the Performing Arts on Broadway, the Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, the Pittsburgh Public Theater, and the Pennsylvania Stage Company. Fallon steered the newly dubbed Austin Theatre Alliance through its inaugural two seasons, but that's it for now. Jim Baudin, president of the Board of Directors of ATA, has announced Fallon's resignation, effective July 31. In the statement released Wednesday, Baudin noted that the organization was "very fortunate to have had a person of Dan's considerable expertise and experience during the formative period of Austin Theatre Alliance. We are grateful for all that he has done. Dan will be missed, but we wish him all of the best in his future endeavors." Fallon is quoted as saying, "I have had a grand two years in Austin, and am so grateful for the wonderful friends, associates, and professional colleagues that I have made in the time that I have been here. I feel that the organization is now in a strong enough position to continue without me, and at this time, there are a number of new opportunities that I would like to explore."
Movin' On Up!
Like the Jeffersons, the Austin Circle of Theatres is moving to the Eastside. The nonprofit arts organization that provides umbrella services for area theatre types is taking leave of its office space at 44th and Burnet Road, where it's been ensconced since December 1999, to take up residence in the former Baird's Bakery at 701 Tillery. Executive Director Latifah Taormina says the new location will offer the organization more office space, plus meeting and rehearsal space for its members. Readers who feel a twinge of déjà vu at this news aren't imagining things. This will mark the umbrella's fourth move in six years: from West Towne Common on West Fifth to the basement of 823 Congress in the spring of 1996, then from there three blocks south to a fourth-floor suite in the Scarbrough Building three years later, then from there to the Rosedale neighborhood just eight months after that, and now, two and a half years later, from Rosedale to Tillery. And in three out of those four moves, the executive director at the time promised more office space and the possibility of rehearsal space for its members. What might make a difference this time around is the size of the venue and the fact that it has already begun to be colonized by arts groups: Second Youth Family Theatre, ALLGO (Austin Latino/Latina Lesbian/Gay Organization), and Star Costumes call the old bakery home. And Taormina believes that the building can be both an incubator for the arts, serving even more companies and giving them a place to create, and a destination for arts lovers, with retail space, food and drink establishments, and room to observe the creative process. If you like the idea, Taormina would love to hear from you. Call 454-9700 or e-mail email@example.com.
If you missed the June 21 edition of "Naked City," you missed Amy Smith's report that your voice for the arts in Central Texas, KMFA, is close to finding a new home, possibly on Toomey Road. The 30-year-old classical musical station has long dreamed of its own facility, preferably one with about 10,000 square feet for housing offices and a new state-of-the art studio, but for the last several months, it has been searching out such a spot in earnest. The leading contender? Some property on Toomey Road owned by Susan Toomey Frost, which puts it in the neighborhood of the Zachary Scott Theatre Center, the Austin Lyric Opera headquarters, and the proposed Long Center for the Performing Arts.
From within the station comes news of another move: that of Randy Harriman, who is retiring as director of broadcast operations come the end of September. Harriman has been with the station for seven years, having served as program director for the past five and as host of the programs Classical Austin, Live From Studio 2000, and Blue Plate Special. Harriman expects to "continue such activities on a part-time basis at least through the end of the year, and probably for some period of time thereafter." Best wishes, Randy. For more info, call 476-5632.