Black banner featuring a photograph of a brown-haired, smiling woman: Lani Brockman. The banner announces her retirement after thirty years as our Founding Artistic Director, and the search for our next Artistic Director.

Dear Friend of Studio East,


I’m writing to share with you that Studio East’s founding Artistic Director, Lani Brockman, will be retiring later this year.

The entire Studio East community is grateful for Lani’s 30 years of unflagging commitment to young people and her dedication to the craft of youth theater. Her impact has been felt in countless lives, and the tools she helps instill has set them up for success in whichever direction they choose. Thanks to Lani, the Eastside – and the world beyond – is full of individuals leading from the heart with confidence, responsibility, and compassion.

“Her actors have experienced the joy and rigor of being part of a production. They learned collaboration, accountability, empathy. For some, the time on our stages was a doorway into a creative career—but for all, it was an opportunity to learn human skills that apply to any role in life,” said Mary Beth Binns, President of our Studio East Board.

Studio East’s 2023-24 season will be its 31st and StoryBook Theater will be entering its 26th. That all began with Lani, and now the search begins for an Artistic Director who will lead us creatively through our next era. It’s an exciting time for us. It’s also a time when the arts are so critical – frankly, a time that can be stressful for our youth. Our principles and goals will remain the same: to be a space where young people can feel at home, and connect with their peers, their community, and their creativity.

Lani says she’s most proud that Studio East has created a culture where young people can explore who they are, and who they want to be. That’s more important than ever.

“For teaching human interaction, truth, honesty, communication, listening – there’s nothing like theater.”

Well said, Lani.

Opportunities to honor and celebrate Lani, and to look forward to Studio East’s next chapter, will be announced in coming months. On behalf of myself, our Board of Directors, and the entire Studio team, I’d like to thank Lani again, and to thank you for your belief in the importance of youth training in the performing arts.


Jennifer Tucker, Managing Director

+ Artistic Director

Job Announcement


Studio East Training for the Performing Arts is seeking an Artistic Director to envision, develop and direct best-in-class programming that inspires young students and audiences through theater. Our thriving Mainstage theater production program, school enrichment programs, and after-school class and summer camp programs, as well as our touring performing company for the youngest audiences, were the brainchild of our founding Artistic Director of 30 years.  You will take the helm from her and own the artistic direction of the future, along with the respect, love and appreciation she and the Studio East community have cultivated over these 30 years.

We will begin interviews June 15 and are targeting September 1 to have a new person on board for the beginning of our 23-24 season and fiscal year.  Compensation starts at $76,000 DOE, plus a benefits package.  Please email resume and cover letter to Mary Beth Binns, President of the Board of Directors, with “Artistic Director Search” in the subject line.  Please, no calls.  Feel free to email us at the same address with questions.  For a full job description, click here.


Who You Are

  • You are unyieldingly passionate about the performing arts as a tool to help young people become and achieve. You love students, and love to mentor them to grow and mature.
  • You have “Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility, and Belonging” at your core, and know that it’s not just about policies and procedures, but a way of thinking and becoming. You have a clear vision of how Studio East can do what theater does best: raise the conversation without preaching; engage without mandating; and question without condescending. You’re eager to select curriculum and content that challenges young artists to reach their highest potential and embrace our common humanity.
  • You embrace the classics, but also place a high value on embracing and developing new works by new artists that showcase new voices.
  • You’ve spent at least 5 years setting the creative direction, overseeing theater educational programming & Mainstage show selection for a $1million+ youth theater and you’re now eager to stretch yourself to take the reins of a $2mil+ program.
  • You have a keen understanding of the genius that sustains performing arts excellence, and specifically non-profit arts education, combining inspired creativity with fiscal wisdom. You are a highly organized artist who understands equally the power of art, and the art of business in a performing arts organization.


Who We Are

Studio East is one of the largest children’s theater education programs in Washington State, serving the Eastside Seattle community for over 30 years. Studio East annually offers over 3,500 youth, ages 4-19, a variety of opportunities within which to explore theater arts. Studio East provides best-in-class performing arts education and audience opportunities to inspire, train and entertain young people through engagement in the art and craft of theater.  Our touring company, StoryBook Theater, performing to an audience of over 70,000 annually, introduces young children throughout the greater Puget Sound area to live musical theater imbued with positive life lessons.


Our Mission

We believe theater is a transformative, cultural force that develops valuable skills children can use throughout their lives – discipline, resilience, dependability, creative problem solving, teamwork — regardless of their eventual chosen vocation.


Our “DEIAB” Statement

We define inclusivity with two words: welcome home. The entire Studio East organization creates and supports an environment that embraces individuals from any background, culture, identity, orientation, or ability, and strives to foster a sense of real belonging.  Our staff training, human resource policies and practices, shows, programming and educational messaging are evolving rapidly to embrace and amplify the changing needs and desires of our community.


Our Story

This year we are celebrating 30 years of program excellence and growth.  And we believe we’re just getting started. We are one of the largest children’s theater programs in Washington, serving the greater Seattle/Puget Sound community.  Each year the Studio challenges over 5000 children, ages 4-19, through a comprehensive program of year-round theater classes, home school classes, day & summer theater camps, student main stage productions, advanced curriculum intensives, and after school enrichment programs at local schools, giving youth tools they need to create and to succeed. We believe in every young person’s ability to embrace the highest-quality and socially relevant theater, believing they can find inside themselves the desire to make a meaningful contribution and achieve their personal best.


Our Executive Team

The Executive Team of Studio East reports directly to the Board of Directors, and is comprised of the Managing Director (MD) and the Artistic Director (AD).  This combined executive team leads a highly collaborative organizational culture. We’ve already secured for you an outstanding team-player Managing Director, who embraces the jill-of-all-trades aspects of managing a multi-branch non-profit theater arts organization, and who embraces the respect and collaboration it takes to build a right-sized budget to ensure we are living out our mission for our students, families, and patrons.  You will be involved in a lot of things yourself; the breadth and depth of this job is its most exciting aspect.


Our Vision for Our Future

Studio East not only found a way through the pandemic, today our programs are thriving.  We are emerging from the pandemic impact with increased student enrollment, consistent program growth, fiscal strength and a heart that beats to reach more students with the light and joy of the performing arts.  We currently rent Kirkland Teen Union Building in downtown Kirkland, WA, and are proactively seeking the right opportunity, and potential capital campaign, to secure a permanent forever home.


Job Description


Position                      Artistic Director

Position Status          Full-time Exempt

Reports to                  Board of Directors

Start Date                   September 1, 2023

Compensation           $76,000+ DOE



Studio East Programs:

  • Year-round after-school and homeschool classes
  • School break camps
  • Summer theater camps
  • 6 Mainstage student productions
  • An offsite summer teen musical
  • A six-week professional summer training program for teens
  • After-school programs and productions at local schools.

The Studio also produces StoryBook Theater (SBT), an adult professional touring troupe that presents original musicals with life-lessons for young children. SBT performs throughout the Puget Sound area for an annual audience of over 70,000.



Pre-pandemic, Studio East operated with a budget of just over $2 million and had a full-time staff of 15.  We are rebuilding our programs with some immediate success growing beyond our pre-pandemic levels.  We currently rent a temporary space, with plans to establish ourselves in a forever home in 5-7 years.



The Artistic Director is responsible for the artistic vision and programming of the company, and for facilitating the artistic component of management and fundraising activities.  The Artistic Director works collaboratively with the Managing Director to form the Executive Team, and reports directly to the Board of Directors.

The Executive Team presents the public face of Studio East and may be called upon to speak to private and public organizations and to the press. Both are expected to embody and be committed to our organizational values.


Major Responsibilities

  • Oversees all aspects of artistic programming, curating the annual season for Mainstage, the Summer Teen Musical, and StoryBook Theater, as well as special events such as Jest for Funds and Curtains Up.
  • Ensures artistic programs meet the goals of Studio East and respond to “DEIAB” principles.
  • Manages and supports the Education Director and Production Manager.
  • Vets and hires directors, choreographers and musical directors for all productions, ensuring that all shows meet artistic standards. The Artistic Director is the final say in the casting of all productions.
  • Maintains positive ongoing working relationships and effective communication with students, volunteers, staff, parents, guest artists, and board members. Handles any artistic concerns of parents or students (e.g. over-casting, rehearsal issues, or personal concerns).
  • Builds the schedule and hires all teachers for the Young Actors Professional Intensive (YAPI), the six-week summer training program for teens who are serious about pursuing a career in the performing arts.
  • Directs the Summer Teen Musical and at least one Mainstage production each year. Directs at least one StoryBook production.
  • Plays an active leadership role in the local theater community; keeps track of and communicates with other local youth theaters; stays informed of theater trends and activities, locally and nationally.
  • As needed, publicly represents Studio East to the media, patrons, other organizations and groups, government bodies, funding agencies, sponsors, and potential sponsors.
  • Builds strong and enduring relationships with local arts organizations, schools, educators, industry associations and other potential partners of the Studio; serve on local boards as appropriate.
  • Helps to devise and participate in outreach and audience development activities related to the company’s productions.
  • Works closely with the Managing Director and Development Director on both short- and long-term strategic planning.
  • In conjunction with the Managing Director, prepares the budget for productions; meets or exceeds established program goals to include increased participation and retention of students in the youth programs.
  • Works closely with the Board of Directors, including attending Board meetings, sitting on Board committees, and attending strategic planning sessions.
  • In collaboration with the Managing Director, serves as a staff lead and liaison for the Board of Directors, ensuring compliance with bylaws and Board handbook policies; develops and executes policy and plans (strategic and annual) that serve the organization’s mission.
  • Provides the Board of Directors, board committees, and the Managing Director regular information on issues falling under the jurisdiction of the Artistic Director.
  • Willing to jump in and help in all areas as necessary. Not afraid of vacuuming, dusting or taking out the trash.



This position demands strong skills in organizational leadership and a familiarity with the open-ended nature of working in a non-profit or being in an artistic process. A candidate must have clarity of artistic vision with a passion for youth education. Other qualifications include:

  • Must love theater and working with children in the arts.
  • Strong leadership skills and an understanding of how to work with directors and teaching artists. Must be supportive and trusting, and allow creativity to flourish while working within a limited budget and technical restrictions.
  • 5+ years of leadership experience with an arts organization or community environment.
  • 5+ years teaching and working with students and their parents.
  • Experience creating youth programming and education.
  • Significant theater performance and directing experience.
  • Working knowledge of production aspects such as costumes, props, sets, and stage makeup/wigs.
  • Demonstrated ability to set and stick to budgets, timelines, and due dates.
  • Bachelor’s Degree – Master’s Degree preferred.
  • Previous experience in fundraising and/or marketing preferred.
  • Ability to work with a team to support fundraising efforts; fluency in the performing arts industry and in arts funding.
  • Excellent verbal, written, interpersonal communication, and presentation skills.
  • The ability to work independently, as well as being a team player.
  • Strong knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, Publisher. Access a plus, as well as Adobe Suite.
  • Ability to stand for long periods of time; regularly lift and move heavy theater and stage objects.
  • Frequent evenings and weekends required.
  • Local travel required: ability and means to travel as needed.


Benefits include health and dental plan; paid sick, vacation, and holiday; and 401(k) matching contributions.
Successful criminal background check required.  Proof of COVID-19 vaccination required.

+ Development Director

Studio East
Training for the Performing Arts

Development Director


Position Summary


Studio East Training for the Performing Arts is a nonprofit organization that has relied on the support of generous donors from the audience we serve and our community to bring our programming to life for 30 years. Philanthropic contributions advance our mission to create confident, compassionate, responsible young people through training in the art and craft of theater and ensures organizational stability.


The Development Director is a full-time position responsible for developing and implementing engagement and fundraising strategies to enhance and grow contributed revenue through board engagement, individual giving, corporate giving, event-based fundraising and cultivation and stewardship of current and prospective donors. The Development Director will lead donor engagement (identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship) and deepen relationships by providing extraordinary cultivation and exceeding expectations in donor stewardship. Works closely with Studio East leadership, consultants, board of directors, and colleagues, to help build a philanthropic vision for Studio East as the organization looks ahead to an important development period.


The Development Director will also recruit and supervise volunteers to help with donor cultivation events and annual fundraising events. Paramount to this position is the ability to work with a high degree of independence, and juggle various projects at once, while maintaining a clear understanding of donor cultivation and moves management.


Key Responsibilities


Major Gifts

  • Manage a portfolio of current and prospective donors and research and work to continually identify, qualify, cultivate, solicit and steward current and new constituents for operating, endowment, program/project, campaign, and planned gifts
  • Create and execute on an annual individual fundraising plan that delivers on overall organizational fundraising goals
  • Spearhead the fundraising strategy that is planned around individual giving and fundraising events
  • Oversee all aspects of the donor cultivation cycle (cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship) to fulfill annual revenue
  • Develop and implement short and long-term fundraising plan in consultation with leadership to secure financial support from individuals
  • Identify and cultivate new donors and increase current donors’ level of support annually
  • Lead the efforts of 2 large fundraising events; one in the fall and one in the spring
  • Support leadership’s relationships with identifying board prospects while cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding interactions with current board members
  • Prepare written materials, including correspondence, proposals, solicitations, acknowledgements
  • Leverage existing supporters to steward, cultivate, and acquire new donors
  • Participate in planning and implementation of annual development budget and plan
  • Collaborate across departments such as marketing and accounting in support and execution of fundraising efforts
  • Maintain accurate, detailed records and reports to track communications and donations
  • Other responsibilities as assigned to ensure successful growth and operational stability


Relationship Management

  • Develop and maintain year-round relationships with prospects and donors. Work to identify, cultivate, and solicit prospective donors leveraging personal and professional contacts and relationships into fundraising opportunities
  • Develop corporate and individual donor engagement plans to help create meaningful relationships and implement strategies to ensure year-round relationships to increase revenue with both short-term and long-term goals


Other Duties

Perform other duties as assigned by leadership


Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities


  • Knowledge of the Washington state philanthropic community is an asset
  • Familiarity with “moves management”
  • Demonstrated writing ability – cultivation content, proposals, acknowledgements, and reports
  • Experience utilizing CRM/database management
  • Ability to develop creative fundraising strategies to engage a broad range of donors and partners
  • Strong verbal, interpersonal communication, and authentic relationship building skills
  • Confident, professional, and passionate about Studio East’s mission
  • Demonstrated ability to work both independently and as part of a team, display self-motivation, set priorities, and meet deadlines
  • Ability to handle multiple projects and commitments concurrently
  • Strong attention to detail and accuracy
  • Master collaborator, exhibiting positive impact on organizational culture with proven ability to work effectively within wide variety of relationships
  • Problem-solver delivering creative solutions
  • Ability to get others excited about, and committed to, furthering the organization’s mission
  • Proactive, flexible and team player
  • Display highest standards in ethics, values, and confidentiality
  • Empathy, creativity, thoughtfulness, and energy
  • Proficient computer skills to include Microsoft Office Suite




  • Individual and corporate relationship building, reporting, and targeted goals
  • Proficient computer skills – Microsoft Office, CRM software, database management
  • Proven record of donor identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship
  • Proven history of managing donor portfolios and making successful asks at all levels
  • Experience in long-term strategy goal setting and implementation
  • Experience in event strategizing and fulfillment


Minimum Qualifications

  • Minimum of 6+ years of major gifts/fundraising experience in non-profit and/or higher education environment required, including prospect solicitation and management. Or a combination of education and experience that demonstrates both the required knowledge, skills, and abilities required to perform the position and a successful track record of securing and growing donor gifts.


Preferred Qualifications

  • BA or MA degree preferred


Position Specifications


  • Full-time exempt position
  • Some evenings and weekends required
  • Salary range $75-90,000, commensurate with experience
  • Hybrid remote and onsite work schedule
  • Benefits include health and dental plan; paid sick, vacation and holiday; and 401(k) matching contributions
  • Successful criminal background check required
  • Proof of COVID-19 vaccination required
    • Local travel required; ability and means to travel on a flexible schedule as needed; proof of liability and property damage insurance on vehicle used is required
  • May need to occasionally lift up to 25 lbs.


To apply

Please email resume and cover letter to jennifertucker@studio-east.org

+ House Manager

Studio East
Training for the Performing Arts

House Manager

Studio East Training for the Performing Arts is a non-profit organization founded on the belief that the performing arts can make a difference in the lives of our children. Children who learn and practice the discipline, dedication, and teamwork required by the craft of theater develop skills that will be valuable assets throughout their lives, no matter what career they choose to pursue.

Studio East is seeking a House Manager to join our team. The House Manager is responsible for Front-of-House performance day elements for both Studio East and StoryBook Theater productions, including real-time management of the customer experience, ticketing software, and oversight of any volunteers. The successful candidate embodies our commitment to excellent customer service and enjoys an event based, detail-oriented role.


House Manager Duties

  • On performance dates, responsible for preparation of front-of-house lobby and auditorium space, and breakdown post-event, whether event be at Studio East or other area venues.
  • Be in communication with Stage Manager and Box Office Manager regarding show logistics, seating capacity, any special needs or circumstances or other date specific items requiring knowledge/attention, etc.
  • During event, manage the customer experience to include patron interaction, concessions, donations, cash handling, and ticketing system. Ticketing system is inclusive of will-call, check-in, ticket sales, and troubleshooting. Patron interaction encompasses answering questions about Studio East/StoryBook Theater’s programs and productions.
  • Oversee volunteer ushers that may be onsite, coordinating their placement and duties.
  • Provide individual show reports to include house counts, any logistics or issues of note, etc.


Desired Skills and Qualifications

  • Front-of-house, cash handling, and ticketing software experience
  • Minimum 1-year experience in customer service, theater/public event environment a plus
  • Mission-driven and eager to learn
  • Strong interpersonal skills with all ages, both in larger settings and one on one
  • Energetic, detail-oriented, proactive, flexible, customer focused
  • First Aid & CPR certifications required upon hire
  • Able to work both independently and collaboratively as part of a team
  • Present a warm, inviting environment/demeanor
  • Able to remain calm, patient, professional, and friendly under pressure
  • High school graduate or equivalent


Position Specifications

  • Part-time, non-exempt
  • Hours vary by Studio East/StoryBook Theater show schedules – able to work flexible, non-traditional schedule of matinees, evenings, and weekends
  • Must be present from onset through conclusion of show prep/performance
  • $19/hour
  • Must be able to lift up to 30 pounds on an occasional basis
  • COVID-19 vaccination required
  • Must pass background check
  • This job will require onsite work at Studio East and offsite work at local theaters, self-transportation to multiple area venues required
  • Complimentary tickets for Studio East and StoryBook Theater performances
  • Family discounts for classes and camps


To apply: Email resume to Jennifer Tucker with subject line of ‘House Manager.’ No phone calls, please.

+ Mainstage Music Director

Mainstage Music Director

Studio East is looking to expand our pool of fun and fresh music directors going into our exciting 30th Anniversary Season, the 2022-2023 season. Please send your resume and 2 references to cassiefitzgerald@studio-east.org.

  • Teach the music for the production to the actors.
  • Provide check ins as needed in production meetings.
  • Watch audition and callback materials as needed and assist the artistic team with casting.
  • Work collaboratively with the artistic team to create weekly rehearsal schedules that fall within schedule guidelines given by the Production Manager and best serve the students time and production needs.
  • Accompany all performances
  • Hire other musicians, if needed.

+ Theater Teachers and Directors

Theater Teachers and Directors

Studio East welcomes resumes from Teaching Artists who are interested in joining our faculty. We hire energetic, responsible theater arts educators who have teaching, directing, choreographing, and/or music directing experience with young people ages 4-19. We are interested in Teaching Artists with several years of teaching/directing experience who love sharing their skills and experience with kids. Trained educators, actors with teaching experience, and pianists are encouraged to apply.

Projects include:

  • Instructors for daytime and after school/evening classes, both on site at Studio East and at eastside area schools
  • Directors/Musical Directors/Choreographers for after school/evening productions, both on site at Studio East and at eastside area schools
  • Directors/Musical Directors for school break camps in April at Studio East and during the summer months at various eastside locations

Please email a letter and resume to Kaysy Ostrom, Education Director.

Studio East also has Class and Camp Assistant Opportunities for teens.

+ Interns & Volunteers

Interns & Volunteers

Ongoing opportunities are available to help out at Studio East! Contact the main office to be directed to the staff person who might best be able to use your skills: 425.820.1800