July 18th, 2023

“Trust your intuition. I knew [sunsetting SITI Company] was the right decision for this company much earlier in the process than others did. It took me a while to trust that intuition and to confidently say, I think this is the right thing for us to do.”  - Michelle Preston

SITI Company was an ensemble-based theater company whose three components were the creation of new work, the training of theater artists, and a commitment to crossing boundaries. 

In the Spring of 2023, Executive Director Michelle Preston, Producing Director Megan Carter, and Managing Director Brad Carlin sat down with David E. Shane to talk about the long road toward sunsetting the organization. They discussed how they went about supporting ensemble members through the grief of letting go of their life’s work, and crying onstage (and off!) with the company during their final bows. Tune in!



Brad Carlin: Brad brings 15 years of arts organization management experience to his new role with SITI. He is also a Senior Consultant with TRG Arts where he supports organizations of all disciplines and sizes in the US, Canada, and the UK. Prior to his work at TRG Arts, Brad was the Managing Director for the Fusebox Festival in Austin, Texas. Brad's history with SITI company reaches back to 2001 as a theater student at St Edward's University in Austin. His work with SITI evolved years later after earning his Masters of Arts Management degree from Carnegie Mellon University when he joined SITI Company as its Associate Managing Director. Brad left SITI to return to Texas in 2008 and now lives in rural England with his wife and daughter.


Megan Carter: Megan E. Carter is a creative producer, strategy consultant, and dramaturg with a track record of sustained success in theatre, interdisciplinary performing arts and live events. Most recently, she led SITI Company, an award-winning theater ensemble, through a comprehensive legacy plan, archive process, and finale season. She is currently a creative consultant with A TODO DAR Productions on rasgos asiaticos, a performance installation by Virginia Grise and Tanya Orellana exploring migration, borders, and family. Megan has developed and produced new and classic works Off-Broadway, as well as internationally at theatres, venues, and festivals like The Fisher Center at Bard, BAM, City Theatre in Pittsburgh, Singapore International Festival of the Arts (SIFA), REDCAT (LA), Teatr Studio (Warsaw), Wuzhen Theatre Festival (Wuzhen, China), Under the Radar Festival, the Huntington Gardens (LA, site-specific), International Divine Comedy Theatre Festival at Małopolska Garden of Arts in (Krakow), the Walt Disney Modular Theater (LA), Classic Stage Company, Cherry Lane Theatre, WP Theater, the World Financial Center (site-specific). At WP Theater, she led the Lab for Directors, Playwrights, and Producers and managed new play development and commissions. Megan served as dramaturg on the American Premiere of Jackie by Elfriede Jelinek and has edited the English translations of a number of Jelinek’s plays, including Rechnitz and The Charges (The Supplicants). She has also edited the SITI Company anthology – SITI COMPANY: THIS IS NOT A HANDBOOK, coming out in 2023. Megan has been on faculty at the Brooklyn College, SITI Company Conservatory and California Institute of the Arts. She is currently on faculty at Primary Stages’ Einhorn School for the Performing Arts (ESPA). Education: MFA in Dramaturgy, Brooklyn College/CUNY; BA in Theatre, Centenary College of Louisiana.

Michelle Preston: Michelle Preston began her career in arts administration at the Columbus Symphony Orchestra before coming to New York City where she has worked with Urban Bush Women, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and the School of American Ballet. She began at SITI Company in 2012 as the Deputy Director and served as Executive Director from 2014-2022.  While at SITI, Michelle produced 9 world premieres, 17 domestic and international tours, and 5 New York City seasons. She also led the multi-year strategic planning process that resulted in the SITI Legacy Plan, a comprehensive set of activities meant to celebrate the accomplishments and preserve the legacy of the ensemble before the organized and intentional sunset at the end of 2022.  She joined the José Limón Dance Foundation as Executive Director in November 2022.

David E. Shane is a director and arts administrator who is currently the Director of Program Services for A.R.T./New York where he sets the strategic vision and goals for a robust suite of programs serving nearly 500 of New York’s nonprofit theatre organizations and a growing number of individual members. Since joining the organization in early 2019, David has overseen the development of new adaptive programming such as a theatre-specific Sexual Harassment Prevention Training. As a director he specializes in the development and production of new work for the American stage and his credits include the Off-Broadway productions of Gidion's Knot (Theatre Row,) Mare In The Men's Room (Am. Theatre of Actors,) as well as the World Premiere productions of Who Is Theo?, Cookie Fight, and Elijah at the Bristol Valley Theater. Prior to joining A.R.T./New York, David held positions as the Program Director for StageSource in Boston, MA and Associate Artistic Director of the Bristol Valley Theater in Upstate, NY where he oversaw the funding and launch of the BVT New Works Initiative.


Additional Links:

SITI Company

Conscientious Closing - a conversation with SITI Company Leadership

Work. Shouldn’t. Suck. Podcast - Sunsetting Organizations

Movers & Shapers: A Dance Podcast - Dante Puleio and Michelle Preston

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“What’s Off?” Production Staff
  • David E. Shane, Executive Producer
  • Erica Wray Barnes, Associate Producer
  • Ashley J. Hicks and Nicky Maggio, Line Producers
  • Catalin Media, Audio Engineer
  • Devon Adams, Art Director/Graphic Design