Magnetic North Theatre Festival board member announces retirement

Earlier this week, the Yukon Arts Centre Board of Directors announced the retirement of current CEO, Al Cushing, after more than nine successful years. Mr. Cushing will depart his role on March 31, 2017.

Throughout his career, spanning more than 35 years, Mr. Cushing has worked across Canada in virtually all areas of theatre. Over the years, he has worked in: scene design, stage management, sound and lighting, and many other areas. He was a stage technician in Ottawa and Vancouver, technical director at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, the production manager with the Manitoba Theatre Centre, company manager at JV Theatre Productions Calgary, and Vice President of Operations at the Epcor Centre in Calgary, Alberta.

During Mr. Cushing’s time with the Yukon Arts Centre, he engaged the board, staff, and volunteers with his vision. This vision included expanding the performance and exhibition spaces, bringing the team to think of the Yukon Arts Centre as a resource for Yukon’s vibrant, cultural community. Ultimately, this vision and drive has made the Centre a destination for performing and visual arts and a significant performing space in Canada.

Al Cushing enjoying opening night of Magnetic North Theatre Festival in Whitehorse at the Yukon Arts Centre

Despite his busy schedule, Mr. Cushing always found time to give back. He served on the boards of the Canadian Institute of Theatre Technology (CITT), the Cultural Human Resource Council, and as the past chair, and current member, on the Magnetic North Theatre Festival board of directors. Mr. Cushing was instrumental in bringing national conferences and gatherings to Yukon, including the Magnetic North Theatre Festival last June.

Under Mr. Cushing’s leadership and belief Northern Canada has many things to teach the rest of the country, he leaves a legacy that will continue to shape the Centre in the future.

From the Magnetic North Theatre Festival family, we would like to thank Mr. Cushing for his contributions to theatre across this country over the years. We’d also like to wish him all the best in his retirement!

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