2017 Producing Gathering Speakers and Facilitators
President, The Jerome Foundation
Ben Cameron will return to NCTC as the Keynote Speaker at this year’s Producing Gathering.
Mr. Cameron addressed the 2013 Producing Gathering and was presented with the NCTC Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Theatre. This award has been given to only three people: Romulus Linney in 2005, William Ivy Long in 2006 and Ben Cameron in 2013.
In 2015, Ben Cameron was appointed president of the Jerome Foundation, based in downtown St. Paul, MN. The Jerome Foundation provides support for young artists in Minnesota and New York City.
Previously, he served as Program Director for the Arts at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation in New York, NY, supervising a $13 million grants program focusing on organizations and artists in the theatre, contemporary dance, jazz and presenting fields.
Prior to that, he spent more than 8 years as the Executive Director of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national service organization for the American nonprofit professional theater, significantly expanding its programs, membership base and grantmaking activities. Prior roles include his work as Senior Program Officer at the Dayton Hudson Foundation, Manager of Community Relations for Target Stores (supervising its grantmaking program) and four years at the National Endowment for the Arts, including two as Director of the Theater Program.
Mr. Cameron has addressed gatherings of arts communities in Dublin, Ireland; Sydney, Australia; Vancouver, Canada; Zwolle, Netherlands; London, England; Edinburgh, Scotland and Montreal, Canada, among other international sites, as well as national gatherings of the theatre, chamber music, dance, and choral music fields in the United States. Ben’s TED Talk on the Power of the Performing arts has been viewed over half a million times online!
He has served on a number of nonprofit boards, including those of the national Arts and Business Council, American Arts Alliance and Grantmakers in the Arts. He has received honorary degrees from DePaul University in Chicago and American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, in addition to an MFA from the Yale School of Drama. In 2007, he was one of five recipients of the Distinguished Alumus Award from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
In addition to his not-for-profit work, he has lectured on theatre aboard both the Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2 as an Oxford Lecturer on four separate cruises, has appeared during 13 different seasons as a panelist on the opera quiz feature on the Live from the Metropolitan radio broadcasts from New York, has twice ridden his bicycle from Minneapolis to Chicago to raise money for AIDS relief services, and serves as a member of the Tony Awards Nominating Committee.
Producing Artistic Director, PlayMakers Repertory Company
Vivienne Benesch is the Producing Artistic Director at PlayMakers Repertory Company. For 12 seasons, she served as Artistic Director of the renowned Chautauqua Theater Company and Conservatory, presiding over the company’s transformation into one of the best summer theatres and most competitive summer training programs in the country. She directed over fifteen productions at CTC including an acclaimed re-imagining of Romeo and Juliet featuring the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, theatre, opera and dance companies. She brought CTC’s production of Amadeus, performed with the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra and Buffalo Philharmonic, to the Virginia Arts Festival. She has helmed productions of Three Sisters, Love Alone, RED and In The Next Room for PlayMakers, directed extensively for The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and recently directed The Heidi Chronicles for Trinity Repertory Company.
As an actress, Vivienne has worked on and off-Broadway, in film and television, and at many of the country’s most celebrated theatres. She appeared with Gene Wilder, Al Pacino and Blythe Danner, performed with Maggie Smith in the London revival of Edward Albee’s The Lady from Dubuque, and received an OBIE Award for her performance in Lee Blessing’s Going to St. Ives. Vivienne is a graduate of Brown University and NYU’s Graduate Acting Program. As an educator, she has directed for and served on the faculty of some of the nation’s foremost actor training programs, including The Juilliard School, UNC-Chapel Hill’s Professional Actor Training Program, Brown/Trinity Rep MFA Program and at her alma mater, NYU’s Graduate Acting Program.
Donna Bradby is the Executive Director of Touring Theatre of North Carolina, a Greensboro-based non-profit theatre dedicated to celebrating the on-going human search for dignity across lines of ethnicity, gender, economic status, religion and age. She is also an Adjunct Professor and Director of Marketing and Publicity for The Department of Visual and Performing Arts at North Carolina A&T State University. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Professional Theatre from the NCA&T and a Masters of Fine Arts in Arts Management from Virginia Tech.
Bradby has directed and performed for professional, community and educational theatres locally and regionally. She has directed for Triad Stage, The Broach Theatre, Open Space Café Theatre, The Barn Dinner Theatre, Community Theatre of Greensboro, High Point Theatre. She has also taught at Bennett College, Virginia Tech and Elon University and been a consultant for many artists and arts organizations across the country.
Angie is the Founder and President of Ignite CSP and Co-Founder of NC Stage Company in Asheville, NC. She has designed and facilitated leadership training workshops, coached executives, and taught workshops on presence all over the country. Angie is the lead designer for all of the company’s training programs, and she recruits and trains all of Executive Repertory’s facilitators. She has coached clients and led workshops at organizations including Deloitte, AIG, TIAA-CREF, Booz Allen, Leidos, the YMCA, Catawba Lands Conservancy, Edward Jones, and Flynn Heath Holt Leadership. Her individual clients include politicians, clergy, corporate executives, professional public speakers, and more.
Angie comes to this work from a lifetime spent in theatre: acting, directing, and producing. She began her career at Playwrights Horizons, and she was the assistant director on the Broadway play “Sacrilege,” starring Ellen Burstyn and Giancarlo Esposito. Since then she has directed more than forty productions, including plays by Shakespeare, Stoppard, Kushner, Shepard, and many others. In 1996, Angie was recruited to design the education programs for the National Shakespeare Company, serving more than 12,000 students annually in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.
Angie is a certified coach, having completed the Evidence-Based Coaching Program at Fielding Graduate University. She holds an Honors degree in Theatre from Smith College and studied acting at the British American Drama Academy. Angie has taught at UNC-Asheville and Warren Wilson College.
John Hewett is the founder and President of Hewett Consulting, and has been leading nonprofit organizations for more than 35 years. He entered development work first as a consultant with and ultimately president of Cargill Associates, the national fundraising consulting firm, and later as Director of Development of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Vice President of Development at the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Senior Vice President of Development and Marketing at the historic Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, and Director of Development at the National Endowment for the Arts in Washington, D.C. A widely-traveled speaker and published author, John is in frequent demand as a teacher, consultant, executive coach and facilitator of best practices in non-profit organizational leadership. He is a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF), holds CFRE status in the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and has served on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania’s Certificate in Fundraising program.
2017 Producing Gathering Sponsors