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General Manager - Waikato Regional Theatre

Job details

Waikato Regional Theatre
30 Jun 2022
Work type
Full time employment
Work classification
Management & Admin, Performing Arts


Role: General Manager – Waikato Regional Theatre

Reports to: Waikato Regional Theatre Operating Company Chairman

Direct Reports: TBA

Relationships: Waikato Regional Theatre Operating Company Directors, Hamilton City Council, Local Authorities of Waikato region, Iwi and manuwhenua, Creative New Zealand, Creative Waikato, other regional and city Theatres, Project Funders, H3, Local and National Businesses and Corporates, Community Organizations, General Public, Performance Agencies


Position Objective

The inaugural General Manager of the Waikato Regional Theatre will have primary responsibility for delivering the ‘Share the Stage’ vision and Theatre’s strategic direction and establishing the operating structure, budgets, and programming. The role will lead the completion of the Theatre’s kit-out prior its opening in mid-2024, and then the delivery of its artistic and marketing direction, entertainment and event programme, in-house hospitality offerings, community activation and commercial success.

To ‘Share the Stage’ is the vision – “every student has the ability to experience world class performing arts”. A venue where top touring acts, the best local talent and community events fill up an all-hours programme of live events.

The Waikato Regional Theatre, currently under construction on a riverbank site on the main street of Kirikiriroa-Hamilton, will be a world-class performing arts centre.

The 1300-seat auditorium, featuring crystal-clear acoustics, up-close sightlines, and flexible stage configurations, will be able to host any and every kind of live stage experience.

Kapunipuni, 'to come together', 'the place where we gather' – this will be the Waikato’s centre stage, a local springboard for performing arts careers and a heartland drawcard for the big stars.

The Theatre is a major rejuvenation venture for the Hamilton CBD, sitting at the centre of a live-wire hospitality zone and cultural precinct, a transformational project for the city and the region.

This is an opportunity to lead a major cultural infrastructure project and commercial enterprise aiming to serve a growth entertainment market in a city and region with a proud history and secure economic future.    



Given the unique aspect of delivering the start-up phase of a new, world class 1300 seat theatre you will be instrumental in developing the theatres sense of identity, culture, quality of programming and desire for excellence in technical and performance delivery.  The below competencies and specific deliverables must be shown and displays by high quality candidates to relate to world class experience with performing arts venues.

Networking and Relationship Management

  • Create a positive high profile with public sector
  • Communications with media, internal and external stakeholders
  • Enhance the reputation of Waikato Regional Theatre
  • Build and maintain a solid network of agencies, performers, and arts management organisations
  • Te Tiriti and bi-cultural practices are inherent in all activity
  • Diversity – comfortable engaging with people from diverse backgrounds and bringing their experiences to the fore
  • Build and maintain a solid network of local organisations, community groups and practitioners in all areas of performing arts
  • Establish and maintain positive and effective partnerships

Leadership (and Management)

  • Plan, recruit and establish a high performing team
  • Demonstrates and models adaptive behaviour
  • Experience in develops vibrant programming and events schedules including audience development
  • Customer focus – promoters, performers, staff and audience
  • Provide leadership and direction for staff
  • Ensures collaborative relationships with all stakeholders
  • Recommends change and improvements to board
  • Understands and responds to legislation / regulation changes


Strategic Planning and Report Creation

  • Currency in theatre and performance trends
  • Currency in regional / national economic and cultural priorities / trends within the performing arts sector
  • Collect, analyse and evaluate data
  • Generate reports and communications to Directors and stakeholders


Financial Forecasting and Analysis

  • Create operational plans
  • Develops, implements and monitors strategies for long term financial viability
  • Develops annual and long-term budgets (sales and revenue targets, operating and capital costs)
  • Prudent management of resources


Culture Building

  • Support own and other professional development
  • Collaborate with partners
  • Coaching and mentoring of staff
  • Fosters positive interaction and facilitates conflict resolution with staff and stakeholders
  • Fosters inclusivity within teams, stakeholders and community


Initiative and Enterprise

  • Revenue generation
  • Identifies and responds to opportunities
  • Can do mindset
  • Understands and manages risk
  • Understands, develops and utilises context specific audience development planning and implementation


Heath and safety

  • Establish and maintain systems and processes for effective management of training, certification, reporting, emergencies



Specific Deliverables

  • Review current theatre pricings and review theatre costs against feasibility
  • Develop staffing structure and confirm works within feasibility
  • Develop funding strategy for ongoing revenue stream to theatre (including educational monies, donors, grants, sponsorships)
  • Finalise technical equipment requirements
  • Commence programming strategy including opening and ongoing programme delivery and an audience development strategy
  • Work collaboratively with local performing arts ecosystem to ensure strategic impact and collective activation
  • Determine hospitality strategy that will optimise revenue
  • Determine relevant venue management software and ticketing strategy
  • Work with commercial offering partners and determine revenue split model between shared spaces




Qualifications – Essential

  • Theatre or Performing Arts management (or relevant experience in similar facilities)

Qualifications – Desirable

  • Leadership, business or management


Proven track record and experience in:

  • Arts sector (particularly Theatre events)
  • Events development
  • Programming (including balance between community and commercial activities)
  • Business development
  • Treaty
  • Commercial credibility
  • Negotiation skills, particularly commercial environment
  • Analysis and evaluation of a range of information (sense making)
  • Management history
  • Relationship building

Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Problem solver
  • Team player
  • Strategic thinker (translates to strategy into operating business plans and processes)
  • Delivers on strategic objectives
  • Effective change manager
  • Confident presenter
  • Knowledge of Theatre and its context
  • Knowledge of wider Performing Arts activity in all genres and forms
  • Knowledge of the region and the wider community
  • Knowledge of current trends in audience development



How to apply


Applications can be made by emailing an application including a Cover letter and Resume to:


Applications close 5pm Thursday June 30th, 2022.

If you have any queries, phone 07 834 0404 to discuss with Kelvyn Eglinton, CEO of Momentum Waikato.

Written by

Waikato Regional Theatre

26 May 2022