A heartfelt farewell from Sam McLean

Dear WJT Community,

I am writing to share the news that I have accepted the position of Managing Director at Theatre Projects Manitoba and my last day as General Manager for Winnipeg Jewish Theatre will be September 1, 2023.

I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunities I’ve been provided working for WJT over the past 5 and a half years. It’s been an honour to work on such high-quality productions that illuminate the human experience through the Jewish lens and provide opportunities for so many diverse artists and their stories. I first began working at WJT as a part-time office administrator midway through the company’s 30th season. I was immensely fortunate to receive mentorship from the former Artistic Director, Ari Weinberg, as I grew in my position and was promoted to Assistant Producer, then Producer and finally General Manager.

I am proud of the many successes WJT experienced in my time with the company, especially when faced with the challenges of the pandemic restrictions on public gatherings. It was WJT’s first time making a digital production when we decided to remount Becoming Dr Ruth with Mariam Bernstein on a limited-time video-on-demand site, and the audience response was overwhelmingly positive. It was also WJT’s first foray into outdoor theatre when we put on Dear Jack, Dear Louise in a tent on the AJCC campus lawn, and that show sold over 98% of all available seats for its entire run. Still, I think the greatest achievement in my time at Winnipeg Jewish Theatre was supporting the development and world premiere of Narrow Bridge by Daniel Thau-Eleff. The play was originally intended to premiere in March of 2020 but was cancelled by the outbreak of the pandemic, which lead to a series of virtual workshops and new drafts before finally playing to sellout crowds in 2023 after years of support and nurturing.

I want to thank all of you for the kindness and consideration you have shown me over the years. I leave WJT in the capable hands of Artistic Director Dan Petrenko, Box Office Manager Patricia Baker and the Board of Directors.


Sam McLean