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ZACH Theatre Producing Artistic Director
Click here to download Dave Steakley’s full bio (PDF)
Now in his 25th season, Dave is dedicated to creating a theatre of, by, and for Austin – a place where our entire community gathers to share an intimate and extraordinary theatre experience. Led by Dave’s vision, the creation of the Topfer Theatre came to fruition, opening in October 2012 with the acclaimed musical Ragtime. Anna Deavere Smith says, “Dave is the future. The YES in his theater’s walls is as palpable as the walls themselves. That YES, I believe, will lead to something brand new, to connect with a broader, more global audience.”
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ZACH Theatre Managing Director
Elisbeth Challener joined ZACH Theatre as Managing Director in 2007, with responsibility for strategic planning, management, finances and fundraising for the organization. Under Elisbeth’s leadership, ZACH successfully designed, built and opened the new $23M Topfer Theatre, which has won significant awards and wide-spread acclaim — all while bringing the theatre to within 2 million dollars of completing the largest capital campaign in ZACH’s history. Other accomplishments during her years at ZACH include creating a multi-year strategic plan that will move the organization into the next phase of its significant expansion, increasing revenue from single ticket sales by 79 percent and increasing revenue from season ticket sales by 139 percent. At a time when many arts organizations in Austin and around the nation have been struggling, ZACH has grown its operating budget from $3 million to $7 million dollars and has operated “in the black” throughout Elisbeth’s tenure.