Earlier this summer, our Marketing Intern took it upon herself to make sure that you, our friends and patrons, get to know our staff a little bit more. She's gone back to school for her senior year, but we're still continuing her efforts! This is the fourth blog post in our Staff Spotlight Series.
For today's Staff Spotlight, Carlin Becker, our Marketing Manager, is interviewing Melissa Day, our Interim Director of Development. Melissa began working here last August, starting as our Development Associate and Capital Campaign Coordinator, and just transitioned into her new role this week! Before working at Virginia Stage Company, she spent several years volunteer fundraising and event coordinating. She also has a Bachelor of Science in Social Science and Business Management as well as a Master of Science in Nonprofit Management.
CB: Can you tell me a little about what drew you to working at Virginia Stage Company?
MD: I was drawn to Virginia Stage because it was out of my comfort zone; I was not a theatre person. I love the idea that Norfolk has so much to offer in the way of arts and culture, and working here has given me the chance to explore.
CB: When did you begin working here and how do you think the company changed since then?
MD: I begin working here in August 2015. Since then we have seen several huge changes, one being the renovation of the Wells Theatre. The Company has come together as a more cohesive unit, not only between staff members, but also with the community.
CB: Where's your favorite place to do lunch in downtown Norfolk?
MD: My favorite place to eat in downtown Norfolk is Zeke's Beans and Bowls in the NEON district...or anywhere with fresh cookies.
CB: Could you describe your job for someone not into theatre?
MD: My kids describe my job as being like Robin Hood — I secure donations from people, foundations, and business and give that money to theatre and artists. I also get to plan special events and dinners. It sounds exciting, but most of the job involves lots of paperwork to answer questions about the programs we do and the impact we make on the community.
CB: What show are you most looking forward to this season?
MD: I am most looking forward to The Wiz. I love the Wizard of Oz and can't wait to see how the magic of the book and movie are reimagined onstage. Our designers are always amazing and have been able to pull off costumes, sets, props, lights, and music to bring whole new worlds to life.
CB: What piece of art has influenced you the most as a person?
The painting Miranda and the Tempest is the piece of art that has most influenced me. I have always been drawn to it and wondered as a child if Miranda was anticipating the return of the ship, watching it approach the shore, or lamenting the loss of a loved one as the ship leaves the harbor on a stormy day.