Dean of Performance and Production Operations

Manhattan School of Music
New York City, New York

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Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Manhattan School of Music, which celebrated its centennial in 2018–19, is at an exciting moment in its considerable history, having made significant investment in its campus and facilities, launched the Global Conservatoire as a founding member, and made substantial progress in realizing the goals set forth in its Strategic Plan (2019-2024), among many other accomplishments. The School continuously assesses and builds upon its tradition of excellence and manages its long-term future through proactive planning and resource development. The successful candidate for the Dean of PPO position will join an institution with a clear vision for the future and a Board of Trustees and senior leadership council whose members are committed to working in a collaborative and supportive spirit. All involved share a strong commitment to enhancing the School’s reputation as a leader in professional music education with a history of excellence.

In executing the Dean of Performance and Production Operations’ portfolio of responsibilities, the successful candidate will:


  • Possess a deep commitment to the mission of MSM and an understanding of the value of working in an artistic, educational environment devoted to excellence.
  • Inspire and demonstrate collaborative leadership among faculty and staff to foster and deliver a high level of collegiality among them.
  • Lead a highly skilled and creative unit of the school that supports all performance- and production-related activities.
  • Support and cultivate leadership of direct reports as they manage day-to-day operations of ensembles and instrument management, patron services and box office, keyboard maintenance, production team, and performance library.
  • Develop protocols and policies to ensure professional and safe performance environments. Artistic Planning and Curriculum Requirements
  • Lead collaborative discussions with EVP/Provost and President, as well as Department Chairs and Artistic Planning Committee to create a cohesive campus-wide artistic plan that builds a year-long performance calendar for all departments and reflects a culture of inclusion within a student-centered environment
  • Lead discussions and collaborate with Associate Deans/Directors of Jazz Arts, Musical Theatre, and Vocal Arts as well as Department Chairs in Orchestra, Orchestral Performance, Winds, Brass, Percussion, and Contemporary Performance to design artistic programming that creates a cohesive series of performance events and balances the students’ participation with their curricular requirements.
  • Conceive and develop multi-year concerts and an overall events calendar in conjunction with the academic year calendar. Coordinate schedule of concerts, master classes, and guest artists; produce a final, detailed calendar schedule for the Design Office.
  • Collaborate with Associate Deans/Directors, Department Chairs, and Dean of Academic Affairs when building future semesters/terms to ensure the schedule for academic coursework aligns with performance-related activities.
  • Support the Managing Directors of Instrumental Ensembles and Opera/Musical Theatre as they place students in ensembles and productions, ensuring students’ placement and rotation provides a range of performance experiences that supports departmental student learning outcomes and curricular goals.
  • With the Dean of Academic Affairs, Managing Ensemble Directors, and Registrar’s Office, cross-reference placement audition results for students’ ensemble placements with class schedules to eliminate course conflicts.
  • Collaborate with cross-departmental support from Media and Communication to develop an ongoing campaign to promote MSM performance-based activities; work with Advancement and direct reports in PPO to manage planning and day-of logistics for events ranging from concerts to donor-related programs.
  • Collaborate with the Dean of Academic Affairs and EVP/Provost, provide input and evaluate impact of curricular sequencing on performance venues/spaces.
  • Collaborate with direct reports and keep the Dean of Student Affairs informed of students demonstrating “at-risk” characteristics (i.e., excessive absences, preparation, etc.).
  • Collaborate with VP/Dean of Enrollment Management in identifying recruitment needs and major-specific enrollment goals to matriculate and retain a balanced enrollment for ensemble experiences.
  • Develop and lead an Artistic Planning/Calendar Committee.
  • Serve as a member of the Council of Chairs, ‘CandE’ (Concerts and Events) Committee, MSM’s Restart Committee, (appointed as MSM’s response to COVID-19), and other committees as assigned. Fiscal and Operational Planning
  • Collaborate with direct reports to build departmental budgets based on academic and artistic programming for performance-related activities.
  • Maintain fiscal responsibility for approximately $1.8M.
  • Manage assignment of spaces for all production/performance-related activities.
  • Recommend and design procedures for managing classrooms, practice rooms, and performance spaces.
  • As needed, evaluate and contract external venues for rentals of off-site productions.
  • Serve as first point of contact for external rentals of performance and classroom space by third-party vendors, and collaborate with Senior VP/CFO to execute contracts in accordance with MSM’s policies and regulations.
  • Support special performance-related events for donors, trustees, and other dignitaries; both internal and external events.

Preferred Characteristics and Capabilities

Manhattan School of Music seeks a vibrant, collaborative, communicative, dynamic leader with an ability to link artistic and academic experiences for students’ educational growth and progress.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Demonstrable record of collaborative leadership and creative problem solving through constructive and proactive communication.
  • Significant experience in artistic and production planning for a broad range of ensembles/genres.
  • Significant experience in budget development, forecast, and a successful record of resource management.
  • Administrative experience in an academic setting with understanding of balancing career-related performance activities within the context of higher education.
  • Experience managing a large group of individuals who oversee and support performance schedules, assigned personnel, operations, production, and equipment.
  • Experience with managing union-based employees and familiarity of CBA protocols and expectations.
  • Proven ability to work in an inclusive and consultative way with faculty, staff, peers, students, and guest artists.
  • Ability to understand and execute contracts to third-party vendors.
  • Understanding of operational and production-related requirements, timelines, and budget implications.
  • Minimum of 5 years of increasing responsibilities in performance or production operations in the performing arts, preferably in music.
  • Communication skills and ability to meet the needs of a broad constituency of faculty, students, and external contacts.
  • Ability to lead and inspire students and professional staff.
  • Lead, participate, and support artistic and programmatic initiatives to meet the needs of MSM’s diverse student population.
  • Familiarity with building and fire codes pursuant to performance venues (responsible for ensuring compliance with OSHA regulations and theatre safety).

Procedure for Candidacy

Nominations and Applications:

Send cover letter, résumé/curriculum vita, and list of three references to: Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost ([email protected]).

Application review will continue until position is filled.

Equal employment and equal educational opportunity have been and will continue to be fundamental principles at Manhattan School of Music, where employment and enrollment are based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination or harassment because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, the status of being transgender, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship or veteran status, disability, or any other characteristic protected by law. Manhattan School of Music does not permit retaliation against individuals who oppose a discriminatory practice or participate in an investigation.

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