jakub | June 2, 2023

AMERICAN THEATRE | Marisa Macella Named Steep Theatre Executive Director

Marisa Macella.

CHICAGO: Steep Theatre has announced Marisa Macella as its new executive director, beginning June 12. Macella succeeds Kate Piatt-Eckert, who stepped down as executive director in November 2022 after nine years with the company. Macella will join artistic director Peter Moore as Steep establishes its permanent artistic home after purchasing a new building in April 2022.

“Marisa possesses a unique appreciation of where we’ve been as a company, where we’re headed, and what it will take to get there,” said Moore in a statement. “We’re thrilled to bring her passion and skills on board and continue our growth as a vital Chicago cultural institution.”

Most recently, Macella served as Lyric Opera of Chicago’s senior manager of fundraising events, in which capacity she produced large-scale events such as Lyric’s season opening gala and its wine auction. Prior to that, Macella was Red Theater’s executive director from 2017 to 2020. During her time at Red, Macella oversaw 10 productions and was a guiding voice behind the theatre’s commitment to accessibility both on- and offstage, including managing the Chicago Annual Unified Storefront Accessibility Auditions, which brought together both Equity and non-Equity theatre companies in the city. Macella’s background also includes serving as assistant executive director of Oil Lamp Theater and receiving a BFA in acting, with a minor in directing, from Oklahoma City University.

“This is such an exciting time for the company—the new space opens so many opportunities—and I am thrilled that the board of directors and the ensemble have put their faith in me to lead the company alongside Peter Moore through the next chapter,” said Macella in a statement. “Of course, Steep has a rich history and an incredible community of artists, and I am looking forward to becoming a part of such a wonderful group of people who have made Steep what it is today.” 

Founded in 2000 by three actors, Steep’s ensemble now consists of 45 theatre artists committed to producing new and under-produced plays that illuminate larger societal issues through the stories of ordinary people in extraordinary situations. As of 2022, the theatre had a budget of around $447,000.

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