Berkshire Opera Festival Appoints Abigail Rollins Executive Director

October 1, 2019

Rollins will take the helm following Berkshire Opera Festival’s Fourth Season production of Don Pasqualeat the Maihaiwe Performing Arts Center

Great Barrington, MA – The Board of Directors of Berkshire Opera Festival (BOF) today announces the appointment of Abigail Rollins as Executive Director. Rollins will take the helm of the organization on September 3, 2019 after the close of the Berkshire Opera Festival’s fourth season production of Don Pasquale, running August 24th through the 30th. Rollins will replace Interim Executive Director Claudia d’Alessandro whose term has ended.

BOF’s Artistic Director Brian Garman, incoming Executive Director Abigail Rollins, Director of Production Jonathon Loy, and Board President Vira Slywotzky (credit: Claudia d’Alessandro)

As Executive Director, Ms. Rollins will be the chief administrative officer of the festival and will work with the Board to achieve the festival’s mission to entertain and enrich the lives of all people throughout the Berkshire region by providing accessible and affordable performances high quality opera productions. Rollins will be responsible for BOF’s fiscal management, and will implement the festival’s strategic plan while fostering relationships with donors and community organizations.  Ms. Rollins joins BOF’s leadership team with the festival’s co-founders, Artistic Director Brian Garman and Director of Production Jonathon Loy.

Abigail Rollins was most recently the Managing Director of Commonwealth Shakespeare Company in Wellesley, MA, where she served from 2010 to the present. Prior to her time in Wellesley, she held positions at Lyric Stage Company of Boston and Trisha Brown Dance Company in NYC.

“Abi is a wonderful addition to the BOF family,” said Vira Slywotzky, President of the Board and chair of the search committee.  “Smart, kind, thoughtful, diligent, and creative, Abi is the leader BOF needs in order to grow, to strengthen its roots, and to expand its reach.  We are very fortunate to have found her.”

Ms. Rollins said, “I am honored to become the next Executive Director of Berkshire Opera Festival and would like to thank Brian, Jonathon, and the BOF Board for their warm welcome to this incredible organization.  BOF has so much to be proud of: a strong mission, quality performances, a dedication to the community, and behind it all, a group of intelligent, caring, and passionate individuals working tirelessly to pull it all together.  I am excited to see what we accomplish together in the years to come.”

Originally from Athens, OH, Ms. Rollins spent her summers growing up in Machiasport, ME, where her family still has a summer home.  Her husband, Matt Whiton, teaches in the theater department at Holyoke Community College. Ms. Rollins received a Master’s degree in arts administration from Boston University, and a Bachelor’s degree in dance and psychology from Kenyon College in Gambier, OH.

About Berkshire Opera Festival

The mission of Berkshire Opera Festival is to entertain and enrich the lives of people of all ages and backgrounds throughout the Berkshire region by providing accessible and affordable performances of a broad range of operas with the highest artistic standards. An innovative and intensive education program and a strong public presence will also establish BOF as a valuable member of the Berkshire arts community.