Arts & Culture

Gateway announces new program directors

By Hannah Scott, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

Published 11:09 PST, Fri March 6, 2020

Last Updated: 2:01 PDT, Fri March 20, 2020

Richmond’s Gateway Theatre will soon be under new leadership.

After receiving many applications for the position of director of artistic programs—a job posting that welcomed unconventional approaches to the role--the theatre decided to hire both Barbara Tomasic and Jasmine Chen, who submitted a joint application.

Tomasic, Gateway’s most recent interim producer, will serve as director of artistic programs, while Chen’s title will be artistic and community producer.

Tomasic said that she and Chen had connected at Gateway several times prior to their joint application. 

“When we connected again through the interview process, it felt like a natural step (to jointly apply for the position). We quickly discovered that we work well together, coming from different perspectives to similar goals,” said Tomasic.

As director of artistic programs, Tomasic will create programming and plan a season that aims to engage members of the community.

“(I will also work) with Jasmine and the team to create work beyond the walls of the theatre, for example community events and opportunities for connection through arts and culture,” she said.

Tomasic praises the forward-thinking attitude at Gateway. 

“There is a willingness to think outside the box, and commitment to growth and teamwork that is contagious and inspiring. I wanted to continue to work with the team in that manner.”

When asked about her favourite aspect of being involved with theatre in Richmond, Tomasic mentioned the commitment of theatregoers and potential for community connection. Community engagement is at the heart of Tomasic and Chen’s plan, says Gateway executive director Camilla Tibbs. 

Tomasic and Chen will begin their new roles in June and July of this year, respectively.

“I want to help make Gateway a hub for performing arts in Richmond, a place where everyone feels welcome and celebrated,” said Tomasic.

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