ADV – Leaderboard

Ginger Poole. (Photo by Mill Mountain Theatre.)

Ginger Poole to Step Down from Mill Mountain Theatre

The producing artistic director will remain on staff until a new artistic director is hired.

ROANOKE, VA.: Mill Mountain Theatre has announced that producing artistic director Ginger Poole will step down at the end of the season or when a new artistic director is appointed. Poole has been with the theatre for 18 years.

“I came to Roanoke 18 years ago as an actor and was asked back to perform and choreograph. This turned into an opportunity to join Mill Mountain Theatre as their director of education,” Poole outlined in a statement. “Little did I know how much that experience would forever change my life. While leaving my role here is truly bittersweet, Mill Mountain Theatre remains a part of who I am.”

Poole, the first woman to serve as Mill Mountain’s producing artistic director, has helped bring the theatre back to life twice: First in 2009, after Mill Mountain stopped producing due to financial struggles, and again after the shutdown in 2020. She has worked in theatre for 35 years and is now leading Mill Mountain through its 60th anniversary season.

“The theatre has thrived under Ginger’s leadership,” the theatre’s former president and director emeritus Cynthia Lawrence said in a statement. “She balances artistic excellence with fiscal responsibility and approaches every decision with the long term sustainability of Mill Mountain top of mind. While we are saddened by her departure, we are grateful to her and support her decision wholeheartedly. We will conduct a thorough national search and will be very thoughtful about who we choose as her successor.”

The search committee will include Poole and multiple current and former Mill Mountain board officers, as well as past presidents. Lawrence will chair the committee, and Poole will remain on staff until a new artistic director is hired.

“I am filled with a lot of hope for the future of Mill Mountain Theatre, and I hold an immense amount of gratitude to everyone that I had the privilege to work alongside,” Poole said.

Mill Mountain Theatre strives to inspire, entertain, educate, enrich, and challenge audiences in Southern Virginia. Mill Mountain is dedicated to nurturing the next generation of artists and audiences through conservatory classes, education programming, and community engagement. As of 2022, the theatre had a budget of approximately $1.2 million.

Support American Theatre: a just and thriving theatre ecology begins with information for all. Please join us in this mission by making a donation to our publisher, Theatre Communications Group. When you support American Theatre magazine and TCG, you support a long legacy of quality nonprofit arts journalism. Click here to make your fully tax-deductible donation today!

ADV – Billboard