Michelle’s professional commitment to the theatre began in the 1990s with the discovery that her office in downtown Victoria’s historic Central Building was just down the hall from Intrepid Theatre’s. Meeting Intrepid founder Randy Smith and GM Michael MacLennan changed her life as she soon found herself working as the site office manager in those early Fringe Festival years. Seeing Shane McCabe’s No Place Like Home and sharing a post-show pint of Häagen-Dazs in the site office confirmed forever that there was a place for her in the performing arts world.
For the next 30 years, Michelle worked as part of the Victoria arts community in diverse and increasingly challenging roles. And her administrative skills definitely evolved since the time she sent 75 copies of the same 3-page fax about the Kaleidoscope show THE ALLIHIPPORHINOCROCODILLIGATOR (1998) to one school, all the while thinking she had mastered how to broadcast fax to all the schools in the district. She does not miss the fax machine!
In the fall of 2005, following the confession to a group of friends that she would enjoy working someplace that had a great Annual Christmas Party, she began work at the Belfry Theatre as the Front of House Manager. Now there is a theatre company that can host a party! Opening the house of her first show, Girl in the Goldfish Bowl, written by Morris Panych and directed by Roy Surrette, is a memory she will always cherish. The magic of that set, and the production it cradled, was more than enough to keep her there for six glorious years.
Before leaving the Belfry, Michelle completed a BA in Education at Vancouver Island University. She then worked five years as part of the team at SelfDesign Learning Community, supporting an online, innovative and personalized approach to learning.
In September 2016 Michelle became General Manager of Langham Court Theatre. During her four years at Canada’s second longest running community theatre she was involved in all areas of managing a theatre and building a community. Working at a theatre company with dedicated volunteers that are key to its operations was a wonderful opportunity and she is grateful for her time with the nonagenarian organization.
In 2020 Michelle joined CCPA as Operations Manager, a position uniquely designed to combine her profound love of the performing arts and deep respect for education.