Angela Scully to retire from Uptown!
WEST CHESTER—Angela Scully, Executive Director of Uptown! Knauer Performing Arts Center, will retire from the theater at the end of this year. Scully has been a driving force in the creation and launch of the theater since joining our team five years ago, said Uptown! President, Gary Green. When she started, the organization owned an abandoned armory and had little else than a bold idea and determined volunteers. Scully found their energy and enthusiasm was infectious.
After seeing that empty building for the first time, she remembers, “I was hooked! I knew for certain that a theater could come to West Chester and I wanted to be part of the process. My job would be to make their vision a reality.” The team began converting the Armory into a theater while fundraising efforts continued and the community responded. The result is the beautiful and award winning Uptown! Knauer Performing Art Center which opened just two years ago, Dec. 31, 2016.
Scully seamlessly transitioned from her role as Development Director of Uptown!s capital campaign to the Executive Director of the live theater. She organized a family of residential companies that bring Broadway quality theater, jazz, opera and contemporary music, Latin programs, improv comedy, a speaker series, movies, and even a theater school to Uptown!
Scully hired a technical production company to run Uptown!s state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems, built a vibrant staff team and set the standard for a welcoming experience for patrons from across the region. Together with the Board of Directors, staff and a committed volunteer core, Scully has built the foundation for a successful nonprofit organization that she believes will take the theater well into the future.
From the beginning, Uptown! founders strived for a venue that would serve as the cultural hub for the region by bringing world class entertainment and diverse programming to West Chester. With this goal in mind, Angela developed strategic partnerships with two of the leading entertainment organizations in the Greater Philadelphia area, the Curtis Institute of Music and World Cafe Live. These organizations eagerly pursue Uptown! as the way to reach patrons in Chester County, bringing high level performers to Uptown!s stage.
As past President Tom McEvoy says, "We all joked that the Uptown Team was like a dog chasing a car with our dream to build a theater. Once we built it, could we 'drive' it? Angela provided the leadership we needed to drive this theater, and we can’t thank her enough.”
Realizing it will take a special person to fill the position, the Uptown! Board of Directors is conducting a nationwide search for the next Executive Director and Angela has generously agreed to help facilitate a smooth transition.
Recently, Scully reflected on her achievements at Uptown!, “I consider this project a capstone of my professional life. Being part of this startup called on everything I knew and then some. This journey has taught me so much.”