Position Opening:
MANAGING DIRECTOR (Cleveland-based)


GRAMMY®-winning chamber orchestra Apollo’s Fire (AF) seeks a Managing Director to lead the business and fundraising efforts of an innovative ensemble performing at the international level. The 32-year-old organization is based in Cleveland, with a satellite series and auxiliary Board in Chicago and a strong worldwide presence through touring and recording.

The Managing Director (MD) collaborates closely with the Founding Artistic Director (AD) to support AF’s artistic mission and to secure the financial resources needed to achieve the organization’s strategic priorities. Along with the AD, the MD is the public face of the organization, focusing primarily on donors, funders, and community relations. This is a full-time position, reporting to the Board.

AF’s next Managing Director will play a pivotal role in guiding the organization’s 4th decade, building on the success of the last 3 decades. With ultimate responsibility for all contributed income, Board engagement, and external relations, the MD will nurture the organization’s highly successful operating model while leading the efforts to expand contributed income. The MD will support and collaborate with the AD, working with the Board and staff in an organizational culture based on consensus and teamwork. The MD will focus primarily on contributed income and Board development (spending approximately 70% of their time on this); the secondary focus is on financial oversight, followed by external relations and staff oversight – thus ensuring the overall well-being of the organization.

Enjoying the support of a small but excellent staff, the MD oversees and collaborates with a highly experienced General Manager (GM). The GM is responsible for operations and earned income.

Key attributes we are seeking:

  • Emotional intelligence, empathy, personal charm, and the ability to develop meaningful relationships with donors and colleagues;
  • Ability to quickly grasp AF’s artistic priorities and to help Board members find their niche within that trajectory;
  • Ability to lead and work within a highly successful, artistically driven business model, while building consensus for new pathways that will benefit the organization;
  • An enthusiasm for serving as a colleague and working as part of a team, rather than merely supervising others;
  • A natural affinity for AF’s organizational values, including consensus, collaborative decision-making, a sense of fun, and the enthusiastic pursuit of diversity and equity in classical music.

An international baroque orchestra in residence in Cleveland and Chicago

Apollo’s Fire at St. Martin-in-the-Fields, London

Performing on historical instruments,
Apollo’s Fire brings to life the music of the past
for audiences of today,
with Passion. Period.

Under the leadership of founding Artistic Director Jeannette Sorrell, GRAMMY-winning ensemble Apollo’s Fire is one of the world’s leading period-instrument baroque orchestras, particularly known for adventurous programming. The ensemble enjoys a large audience, with 22,000 tickets sold in Cleveland and Chicago in the 2022-23 season (34 of the concerts sold out).

IN CLEVELAND: Now in its 32nd season, Apollo’s Fire has built in Cleveland one of the nation’s three largest audiences for baroque music. Since 2017, AF has brought in thousands of new attendees through its innovative Community Access Initiative (CAI), including casual Baroque Bistro concerts in popular restaurants, free Family Concerts, and free school workshops. Phase 2 of the CAI, called The MOSAIC Project, was launched in 2020 and nurtures talented young musicians of color, seeking to create a more diverse classical music field.

IN CHICAGO: AF’s Windy City Series is in its third season, as is AF’s extensive SIDE-BY-SIDE education program in a Southside Chicago suburb. A subsidiary Board of Directors was launched in 2022, focused on fundraising and friend-raising.

WORLDWIDE: Apollo’s Fire is one of North America’s most prominent touring chamber orchestras, performing at such venues as Carnegie Hall, the BBC Proms (London), the Royal Theatre of Madrid, London’s St. Martin-in-the Fields, the Tanglewood, Ravinia, and Aspen Music Festivals, the Boston Early Music Festival series, the Library of Congress, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NYC), and many others. AF has a significant and growing YouTube presence (over 15 million views), and 31 commercial recordings of which 12 have been Billboard Classical best-sellers.

NUTS & BOLTS: The organization has an annual budget of around $2.8 million, a Board of 26, and a staff of approximately 6 full-time and 9 part-time employees. The offices are located in the historic Rockefeller Building in Cleveland Heights. Two Chicago-based staff members work from their homes. The organization operates debt-free and maintains a strong cash reserve.



  • Achieve the organization’s fundraising goals in collaboration with the Board and the Director of Development; this includes major gifts, sponsorships, major grants, cultivation of planned giving, and oversight of all donations;
  • Donor Stewardship –build individual relationships with AF’s major donors, identifying their particular passions and inspiring them to increase their giving; work with the Director of Development, the Northeast Ohio Board, and the Chicago auxiliary Board to seek out and cultivate new potential high-level donors; ensure that existing donors are engaged and appreciated;
  • Foundation Relations – oversee the grantwriting process (primarily implemented by the Development Director and Marketing Director); in collaboration with the Development Director, attend meetings with foundation officers and maintain close funder relationships; seek out and build relationships with new philanthropic sources of support;
  • Special Events – together with the Director of Development, provide strong and effective leadership for the annual Gala and any other major fundraising events; recruit the Gala committee; oversee all other cultivation events, which are implemented by the Development Manager.

Board Relations

  • Build individual relationships with Board members and help them use their contacts and resources to engage with AF’s mission;
  • Be an active voice at Board and committee meetings, including meetings of the Chicago auxiliary Board (usually via zoom); lead the agenda-planning process; ensure that Board materials are sent on a timely basis, with minutes or follow-up notes afterwards; collaborate with committee chairs;
  • Collaborate with the Governance committee to spearhead Board recruitment with a focus on individuals who can further AF’s strategic goals, including financial strength, diversity, and building corporate support.

External Relations & Community Engagement

  • Represent AF at community non-profit/arts meetings and events, as appropriate;
  • With the Artistic Director, pursue and facilitate strategic partnerships with peer organizations in Cleveland, Chicago, and beyond;
  • Become an active member of the Cleveland arts community and a visible, semi-regular presence in Chicago.

Financial Oversight

  • Maintain a strong, stable long-term financial outlook that ensures the proper resources for long-term planning;
  • Oversee AF’s financial reporting and the annual budgeting process; collaborate with the Director of Development to prepare the Development and Special Events budgets; collaborate with the GM and AD to prepare the full institutional budget;
  • Together with the GM, attend Finance Committee meetings and oversee external auditors.

Administrative Leadership

  • Demonstratinga collaborative leadership style, supervise the Director of Development and the General Manager (GM), to whom all other staff report; lead staff meetings;
  • Engage the Board and staff in implementing AF’s 2024-28 Strategic Plan. The goals include an annual presence in New York City and a biennial international tour; building AF’s Chicago series; strengthening and increasing the staff; building the Board; increasing AF’s fundraising capacity; and expanding AF’s outreach and DEI efforts;
    • In addition, our Strategic Plan includes the goal of renovating a prominent, historic church in University Circle to become a professional 500-seat concert hall and community arts center. AF’s Director of Strategic Initiatives takes the lead on this project;
    • Lead future Strategic Planning processes in collaboration with the Board, AD and senior staff;
  • Human Resources – advise and support the GM, who implements company policies including payroll, health insurance, etc.; when needed, seek out new/improved HR solutions for the company, with the assistance of the GM;
  • Musician-Donor Relations – in consort with the Director of Development, facilitate musician-donor interaction by arranging post-concert celebrations and other activities to enhance the musicians’ and patrons’ community – in Cleveland, Chicago, and occasionally on tour.

Concert Attendance

  • Be an engaging presence at ¾ of concerts, including receptions; present curtain speeches when needed.


  • $110-140k if full time, but we are also open to the possibility of an experienced, senior-level MD who wants to work 2/3 or 3/4-time; excellent health benefits; optional 403(b) (tax advantaged) retirement plan. Note: compared with Cleveland, the cost of living is 63% higher in Boston; 88% higher in Brooklyn, NY; 30% higher in Chicago, 28% higher in Miami; and 100% higher in San Francisco. [cost of living calculator]


  • A proven track-record of success in the following areas:
    • non-profit fundraising, preferably in the arts
    • special-event planning and execution, preferably including “gala” events
    • financial management, including development of annual budgets
  • Emotional intelligence, empathy, and a gift for collaboration and building consensus;
  • Strong written and oral communication skills; outstanding interpersonal skills, evidenced by relationships in prior roles;
  • A demonstrated passion for classical music;
  • A “can do” attitude and an entrepreneurial, adaptable approach to business-planning;
  • Bachelors’ Degree required; Master’s preferred;
  • 5 years’ professional experience on the staff of a performing arts organization, with 3 years’ management/leadership experience;
  • An ease with computers and proficiency with Microsoft Word and Excel;
  • An automobile and a valid driver’s license are required.
  • An intimate knowledge of the Cleveland or Chicago community is a strong asset; residence in Cleveland will be required.

Apollo’s Fire is an equal opportunity employer. We celebrate diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment, an equitable organization, and a diverse music community.


Please send cover letter (required), resumé, and 3 references via email to search@apollosfire.org.

This position is open until filled.

“The U.S.A.’s hottest baroque band.” –CLASSICAL MUSIC MAGAZINE (UK)

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