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Former ‘Blue Man’ President Will Be Public Theater’s Executive Director

(Patrick Healy, ArtsBeat, The New York Times) The board of the Public Theater announced its new executive director on Monday, entrusting its $18.5 million operating budget and other business operations to a somewhat unusual pick: Patrick Willingham, the former president and chief operating officer of Blue Man Productions, a for-profit company that turned the Off Broadway production “Blue Man Group” into an international entertainment attraction.

Both the Public’s artistic director, Oskar Eustis, and Mr. Willingham said in telephone interviews on Monday that he was a counterintuitive selection: Mr. Willingham has never been a senior executive or financial officer at a nonprofit theater before, nor does he have experience in theater fund-raising or producing a season.