After months of finance- and leadership-related distress on the part of Miami City Ballet's board, staff, and supporters, it's nice to have some good news. And the combination of increased donations to MCB and the hiring of Daniel Hagerty, a former fundraiser for Washington D.C.'s Kennedy Center, as the company's new executive director seems to be just that.
On Monday, MCB announced it had received $3 million in new donations, thanks in part to guidance from consultant and Kennedy Center president Michael Kaiser. Yesterday, the appointment of Hagerty -- who was introduced to the MCB board by Kaiser -- was the next optimistic announcement.
"We have really turned a corner," Kaiser told the Miami Herald.
Hagerty starts in late October, joining new artistic director Lourdes Lopez in leading the company after its founder, renowned dancer and choreographer Edward Villella, stepped down earlier this month. Villella was pushed out of the company by the MCB board, according to reports.
Hagerty's team at the Kennedy Center raised over $25 million, according to the center's website.
That's a good sign for MCB, especially in light of its recent fundraising success. The Herald reports that recent donations have included one $1 million gift and another gift of $500,000.
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Kaiser told the Herald that success is owed to focusing on the company's exciting future in new hands, rather than its troubled and somewhat controversial past:
"When you stop pointing fingers at people and start talking about the excitement of an organization, that's when people are happy to give."