Executive Director | Grand Performances

Grand Performances (GP)

Los Angeles, CA


Celebrating its 30th Anniversary, Grand Performances (GP) is a California nonprofit public benefit corporation that inspires community, celebrates diversity, and unites Los Angeles through free access to global performing arts. GP brings artists and audiences together by thoughtfully curating an array of music, dance, film, and spoken word performances, featuring great local and global artists. Its performances and events, which range from elaborate and grand to intimate and thought-provoking, bring thousands of people to downtown Los Angeles's majestic Water Court plaza every summer weekend to connect with one another and enjoy world-class entertainment.

GP events include a diverse range of free offerings such as concerts, one-time-only performances, and series of events, including the downSTAGE artist talks presented in partnership with KPCC, Classical Remix Weekend, and Los Angeles Aftershocks, exemplifying how music, dialogue, and community celebration can help address social issues such as racism in the city and nation. Events are held in California Plaza’s two primary venues: the WaterCourt Stage, which fits approximately 5,100 people, and the Marina Pavilion Amphitheater, which seats approximately 350 people with overflow seating across the plaza.

GP  is  an  active  member  of  the  local,  regional,  and  national  arts  community.  It  strives  to  reach community members throughout the Greater Los Angeles area, actively seeking and welcoming a broad and diverse audience. It collaborates with community-based organizations and committees to build audiences and financial support for its programs. GP encourages staff to play leadership roles in the professional service organizations within the field and supports their services as a State Arts Council member. The organization also offers its programming as a model for others to emulate how to involve broad cross-sections of the community in audiences.

GP is governed by an approximately 20-member board of directors and a staff of approximately ten employees. Its revenue flows from the following contributions: California Plaza Incorporated Entities (54 percent), foundations (13 percent), in-kind donations (12 percent), government (8 percent), individuals (6 percent), special events (3 percent), board (2 percent), and corporate (2 percent). For the current fiscal year as of July 7, 2016, the organization had a revised year-end forecast projecting total revenues of $1,957,041 and total expenses of $1,986,499.


A full time position, the GP executive director (ED) is responsible for the overall operation of the organization. This individual will report directly to the board of directors and will provide leadership to the board and staff in the identification and realization of the values, vision, and mission of the organization. The ED will oversee the selection, booking, preparation, and presentation of the live events under the auspices of GP and will actively engage in the fundraising, business development, and public affairs interface essential to GP’s long-term viability. This individual will also oversee services for Plaza Commons, Inc. (PCI), California Plaza’s mutual benefit corporation.


Fundraising and Development

  • Provide organizational leadership in all aspects of fundraising and development, establishing personal relationships with key funders and donors in order to facilitate the creation of new and renewed sources of major gifts and philanthropic support.
  • Work closely with the development staff in creating annual fundraising plans and meeting or exceeding the established goals.
  • Cultivate existing donors for ongoing support while seeking new prospects to assure the funding base is robust and diverse.
  • Identify and maintain strong relationships with key community partners to diversify and expand the organization’s donor base. 

Overall Operations and Management

  • Approve the annual presentation schedule reflective of the multi-cultural community and ensure the quality and quantity of performances and non-performance activities are offered at the highest standard.
  • Monitor the organizational structure in the areas of human resources, overall operations, financial systems, information technology systems, and processes and procedures, implementing improvements when necessary.
  • Oversee, direct, develop, and manage a senior management team to perpetuate the organization through trust, cooperation, collaboration, and teamwork using open channels of communication.
  • Encourage staff retention by fostering meaningful opportunities for the professional development and growth.
  • Review position descriptions, ensuring they are up-to-date and that compensation is current with industry standards, and maintain an annual professional performance review system for all employees.
  • Appropriately address job performance issues in a timely and direct manner.
  • Supervise finance office activities to assure that all revenues, financial obligations, reports, and filings are collected, paid, and submitted in a timely manner and maintain GP’s nonprofit status.
  • Connect marketing and communication efforts of GP with all targeted audiences.

Board Governance

  • Regularly meet and communicate with the board members to make mission-based decisions about strategic plans, programming and community service policies, goals, and support for activities.
  • Provide the board with appropriate materials prior to each meeting and inform members of organization and field issues that need to be addressed.
  • Oversee the timely preparation of the annual budget in consultation with the board of directors, treasurer, and senior staff.
  • Establish a strong working relationship with the board of directors in financial, programmatic, service, and performance activities, encouraging all members to participate actively and facilitating their involvement beyond board meetings.
  • Identify new board members whose talents, background, interests, experience, and commitment will further the mission and expand support.

Plaza Commons, Incorporated (PCI) and Community Relationships

  • Serve as liaison to PCI and potentially serve as an officer of that corporation
  • Encourage owners to utilize the performing arts program as an asset for their own marketing and venue promotion purposes.
  • Actively participate in the Downtown Los Angeles business community, including attending government and business receptions, seminars, and events.
  • Increase widespread knowledge of GP, conveying its commitment to serving a broad demographic and ensuring that the public as well as current and potential partners understand its value and importance.


Qualified applicants will have a bachelor's degree, master’s degree preferred, and leadership experience in a nonprofit organization in the arts, culture, or a similar field. Expertise in planning, organizational development, and team building in a collegial environment of mutual respect is needed. Knowledge of the complexities of Greater Los Angeles is highly desirable, as the interface with this broad community is essential to the ongoing success and profile of GP. This individual will have a successful track record in raising funds from a variety of sources, including the cultivation and solicitation of gifts from individuals, government/public entities, foundations, and corporations. Experience working with boards and effective verbal and written skills that can reach a broad range of individuals and organizations are also expected. A passion for global performing arts is required.


A comprehensive compensation package commensurate with experience includes a group insurance benefit program of medical, long-term disability, and life insurance. Current retirement benefits are provided through a voluntary 403(b) plan with a matching contribution after six months of service. GP also provides vacation, sick, and holiday time.


Please submit a letter and resume (electronic submissions preferred) with a summary of demonstrable accomplishments to: 

Dr. Michael Blachly, Senior Advisor
Arts Consulting Group
503 East Jackson Street, Suite 337
Tampa, FL 33602-4904
Tel: (888) 234.4236 Ext. 206
Fax: (888) 284.6651

Email: [email protected]


Grand Performances (GP) is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer.

In keeping with this policy, GP will continue to recruit, hire, train, and promote into all jobs the most qualified persons without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, religion, sex, gender identity, pregnancy, marital status, disability, medical condition, age, sexual orientation, or veteran status.

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