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Posted at 1:00 PM ET, 11/30/2010

Strathmore Changes Leadership Roles

By Jacqueline Trescott

Strathmore President Monica Jeffries Hazangeles (Photo by Kirsten Beckerman)

The Music Center at Strathmore has successfully built its brand, and Eliot Pfanstiehl, the president of the Stathmore programs since 1983, has been a champion of the arts in the region.

Now that the 6-year-old Concert Hall has found its niche among the region's venues, Pfanstiehl has decided to take on another role for the institution. "The question comes in every organization's life, what is the next step in our evolution," said Pfanstiehl, 60. The founding president is now going to tackle putting together a 2020 Vision plan for the arts center.

"That will allow us to look at how do we move to earn more earned income or contributed income, or both. Over time the federal, state and county money will start to decline. How do we get ready for that," he said.

Monica Jeffries Hazangeles, a part of the leadership team at Strathmore for 17 years and most recently executive vice president for administration, has been named president.

"The acceptance and use of the concert hall really exceeded any of our expectations," said Hazangeles, 43, who is overseeing the day-to-day operations of the approximately 35 person staff.

Attendance at the hall, located along the Rockville Pike corridor, has reached 250,000 a year. That includes the 700 students a week who attend programs with its resident partners, including City Dance Center and Levine School of Music. Strarthmore also has its own offerings for students, including Opera Tots and Opera Kids.

Hazangeles brings experience both as a musician and an administrator. She grew up in Florida, starting early with choral music ensembles and flute practices. After Florida State University, she earned a masters degree in flute performance at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. One of her early administrative jobs was with Chamber Music Kansas City. "I found a place for myself in the arts world, combining my experience with music and organization. I loved the behind-the-scenes work," Hazangeles said.

In 1992 she moved to Washington, earned a masters degree in arts management from American University and worked for the Smithsonian Resident Associates.

The challenges for Strathmore are the same for all businesses, she pointed out. "The challenge is going to be to remain nimble, creative and sustainable,"Hazangeles said. Like other arts leaders, she is worried about filling the gap if public money declines. Government funds were essential for the building of the music hall. Both Maryland and Montgomery County contributed $48 million. Right now 6.7 percent of Strathmore's operating budget comes from the state and 4.5 percent from the county.

"It is increasingly difficult for that sector," Hazangeles said.

By Jacqueline Trescott  | November 30, 2010; 1:00 PM ET
Categories:  Jacqueline Trescott  | Tags:  Washington regional concert halls, arts leadership, eliot pfanstiehl, monica jeffries hazangeles, music center at strathmore  
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