The Crucible Forges a Stronger Organization in 2010

After a decade of making industrial and fine art accessible to the Bay Area, Founder Michael Sturtz transitions to Creative Director, as Kathleen Brown comes on board as Interim Executive Director.

Oakland, CA, January 13, 2010 --( As The Crucible enters its second decade, the nonprofit arts education organization is looking at 2010 as a year of strengthening educational programming and operational infrastructure, while expanding into new territory by building upon the foundation laid over the last ten years. This year also marks the beginning of a new era for The Crucible. Michael Sturtz, founder and executive director for the last eleven years, will transition into a new role as Founder/Creative Director. After a well-deserved sabbatical, Michael will focus his creative energy on elevating The Crucible’s events, programs and outreach to a new and even more mind-boggling level.

The Crucible community welcomes Kathleen Brown as the new Interim Executive Director, on board to guide the organization forward into its second decade. Kathleen most recently worked with the Museum of the African Diaspora, and brings her years of management and planning expertise to fortify the business infrastructure, and work with the board of directors to ensure The Crucible’s health and longevity. Additionally, The Crucible’s Youth & Community Director, Kristy Alfieri, has been promoted to the new position of Education Director, and will focus her efforts on reinforcing the organization's educational philosophy, ensuring quality program delivery and providing leadership and direction to program staff and faculty.

In his role as Founder/Creative Director, Michael will work with The Crucible’s exemplary staff throughout 2010 to develop engaging classes, institute a lecture series, and produce several intimate events, all while planning new theatrical spectacles to be unveiled in 2011 and beyond. Written and designed specifically for The Crucible’s unique capabilities, these productions will be truly world-class multimedia and multi-genre productions. “Machine” a Fire Opera, premiers January 2011; and in January 2012, the Crucible will debut the Fire Ballet comedy “2012: A Space Oddity.”

“We would like to thank our donors, members, and supporters for all they have done to make the first ten years such a success,” says Sturtz, “Each of our dedicated board of directors, staff, and faculty are committed to make the next ten years even more exciting, with more educational programs, explosive new events, and opportunities as yet unimagined.”

Here’s just a taste of what The Crucible has in the fire for 2010:

The Cathedral Gallery – Next new show opens January 21: Metal vs. Wood/Wood vs. Metal, and gallery hours have been expanded to weekdays 11-2PM, and 6-9PM on First Friday nights
A new lecture/demonstration series featuring faculty and guest artists
More classes – Over 30 new adult classes have been added, including several combo classes where students learn and practice skills in more than one discipline
More youth services – Nine new classes and two spring break sessions will be available this year
More corporate teambuilding events & experiences – Studio facilities will be available to even more outside events and groups looking for a unique experience
Private lessons & events – In response to popular demand, instructors are beginning to offer individualized sessions in selected areas, and to studio space is available for special events, parties, and workshops

About The Crucible
The Crucible is a non-profit arts education center that fosters a collaboration of arts, industry, and community by teaching and showcasing fire, metal, glass, and light art. Founded in 1999, The Crucible currently offers more than 700 classes to nearly 5,000 students annually in everything from bronze casting to neon, welding to glass working, blacksmithing to fire dancing, textiles to woodworking. Visit the website for more information and inspiration:

The Crucible
Jan Schlesinger
510-444-0919 Ext. 109
Cell: 415-595-1184