The Bedford Playhouse on Tuesday announced the hiring of its new executive director, Michael “Hoagy” Hoagland.
Mr. Hoagland comes to the Playhouse team with a 30-year career in entertainment, from performing on stages around the globe to writing and producing large production shows for theaters and casinos, the Playhouse said in an announcement of his appointment. Most recently, he was senior director of brand advancement and events at the USO in New York City, overseeing the design and production of events, communications, marketing and other areas.
“Hoagy joins Bedford Playhouse at a critical time as we anxiously look forward to our reopening,” said Sarah Long, chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bedford Playhouse.
“He is a strategic thinker who brings a diverse skillset to our organization. We look forward to having him guide us as we embark upon the next chapter for our incredible Playhouse.”
In response to COVID-19, Bedford Playhouse closed its doors in March and has since transformed its programming into the “virtual playhouse” offering a broad range of movies, lectures and special programming. This summer, the Playhouse hosted several socially distant events to bring the community together, including outdoor concerts on the Playhouse lawn, drive-in movie nights, and sales of curbside concessions for families to enjoy movies at home.
These initiatives were led by Kim Speegle, a member of the Playhouse board who stepped in as interim executive director. Ms. Long said, “We could not have done any of this work without Kim’s leadership. She has carefully and thoughtfully dedicated her time and energy to the Playhouse these past few months. We are grateful for Kim’s continued commitment to the Playhouse and our community.”
Ms. Long said Mr. Hoagland will partner with the board of directors and Playhouse staff to maintain the momentum of the past few months.
“I am thrilled to be joining Bedford Playhouse at this important time,” Mr. Hoagland said in a statement. “I know first-hand how critical a thriving arts organization is to a community. As a steward for the next generation, I am eager to leverage my industry experience to engage with our members, expand our exceptional programming and welcome the community back through our Playhouse doors.”
Playhouse founder John Farr said in the announcement, “Hoagy is creative, excited and passionate about the nonprofit arts world. His expertise will surely be an asset as we enter this new day for the Playhouse and we are grateful to welcome him.”
Mr. Hoogland is a resident of Hopewell Junction.