Embattled Skylight Opera Theater director resigns

Posted on: August 7, 2009

In today’s (8/7) New York Times, Daniel J. Wakin reports that Eric Dillner has resigned as managing director of Milwaukee’s Skylight Opera Theater. “In a telephone interview Thursday, Mr. Dillner said he had not been pressured by the board to resign. ‘It was time to let somebody else carry it on forward,’ he said…. Mr. Dillner came under intense criticism from a vocal group of Skylight performers and patrons after he eliminated five positions as part of cost-saving measures. One of the positions was that of artistic director, which had been held by William Theisen, a respected Milwaukee director and actor. In an interview, Mr. Dillner said the positions were eliminated with board approval…. The company said it had brought back two former managing directors, Colin Cabot and Joan Lounsberry, on a temporary basis. Mr. Cabot will provide artistic direction…. After Mr. Dillner’s efforts to deal with severe financial setbacks, about two dozen performers and other creative collaborators like directors and designers resigned in protest. Mr. Cabot said that many of the artists who withdrew would be returning to casts of the productions for next season, the Skylight’s 50th.”

Posted August 7, 2009