LENOX, Mass. – Shakespeare & Company, a theater performance, education, and training outfit now celebrating its 45th year, announces the appointment of Amy Handelsman as Managing Director effective May 1, 2022. 

Handelsman accepted the position following an executive search process led by Arts Consulting Group (ACG), and comes to the Company with more than two decades of diverse experience in theater, dance, film, and television, particularly in the areas of nonprofit management, business development, and strategic planning. 

“I am thrilled to be joining Allyn Burrows, the rest of the staff, and the Board at Shakespeare & Company—one of the nation’s most highly regarded theater companies—to uphold the playful rigor of its work and to open up new avenues for programming, partnerships, and community engagement,” she said.

In her new position, Handelsman will be responsible for championing Shakespeare & Company’s artistic vision through the development of new and expanded income streams, expansion, and cultivation of the Company’s Board of Trustees; supervision of administrative, marketing, and fundraising efforts, and ongoing engagement with various constituents in the Berkshire County community. 

Most recently, Handelsman served as Managing Director of GALLIM, a movement production company based in Brooklyn, N.Y., which has staged productions at Lincoln Center’s Hearst Plaza, New York City Ballet, the Martha Graham Dance Company, Ailey II Dance Company, and other venues. 

She serves on the Artistic Council of the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s Playwrights Conference, and has worked as a curator, dramaturge, project manager, and consultant for a wide range of clients including the Hip-Hop Theater Festival (Hi-ARTS), HBO’s U.S. Comedy Arts Festival, and locally with Jacob’s Pillow and the Batsheva Dance Company’s 2018 Summer Tour. 

She’s also served as Executive Director of David Dorfman Dance, as Executive Director of United States Mind Sports Association (USMSA) and United States Poker Federation (USPF), both based in New York, N.Y., and as Creative Director of the Showtime Development Project at Center Theatre Group, developing cable projects with playwrights, directors, and talent. Handelsman has served as a story executive or producer at Disney, Warner Bros., Tri-Star, and PBS.

She has also held a number of teaching positions, including as an adjunct professor at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and SUNY Stony Brook University, a guest lecturer at Columbia Graduate School for Film and Television, and Literacy Instructor at Girls Prep Bronx Middle School in the South Bronx, in addition to teaching aspiring b’nai mitzvah students at Lab/Shul. She holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing and Literature from Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, N.Y., and a Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, in Fine Arts from Harvard University. 

“We’re very happy to welcome Amy into our midst as Managing Director,” said Shakespeare & Company’s Artistic Director Allyn Burrows. “Ours is a unique organization, and Amy brings a perspective and sensibility that aligns with our collective conversation as we look toward new horizons. 

“A long-time theater-maker, Amy understands the commitment it takes to make this art form relevant and viable in an ever-changing world,” he continued. “It’s exciting to have her join us.”

Burrows’ sentiments are echoed by members of the Shakespeare & Company Board of Trustees, including Search Committee Chair and former Board Chair Michael A. Miller, who noted Handelsman’s vast experience in the arts as a particular plus. 

“Having managed other very reputable arts organizations, Amy brings a wealth of experience that this company will truly benefit from. We’re looking forward to having her join the Board and staff to build on the accomplishments of the last 45 years.”

Similarly, Board Chair Beverly Hyman, Ph.D., added that “of course, you cannot fail to recognize Amy’s rich theater experience when you meet her. But I am sure the cultural community of the Berkshires will be struck by her incredible warmth and the depth of her network of contacts in the field.”

For more information, visit shakespeare.org, or call 413.637.1199, ext. 144. 

About Shakespeare & Company

Shakespeare & Company was founded in 1978 by Tina Packer. Located in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, the Company offers performance, education, and actor-training opportunities year-round, and attracts more than 40,000 patrons annually with a core of more than 150 artists.

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