The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to approve the transfer of the operation of the John Anson Ford Theatres to the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association.
The LA Phil will begin operating the Ford Theatres on December 1, with programming starting with the 2020 season.
Situated in a 32-acre regional park in the Cahuenga Pass, the Ford Theatres complex is one of the oldest performing arts venues in Los Angeles.
The agreement will strengthen the Ford Theatres’ ability to contribute to the vibrant Los Angeles County arts community by supporting creative expression and providing access to performance experiences representative of the County’s multifaceted communities.
This new agreement will raise visibility for the Ford Theatres and, because the LA Phil is also the longtime steward of the nearby Hollywood Bowl, create operational efficiencies.
LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, whose district includes the Ford Theatres and the Hollywood Bowl, said, “This partnership brings together two of LA’s cultural gems, and we are confident that the sum will be even greater than the parts. With 46 years of stewardship and proven operating capabilities at the Hollywood Bowl, the Los Angeles Philharmonic was the clear choice to manage the Ford Theatres on behalf of the county.
“The LA Phil embraces the Ford Theatres’ commitment to supporting local artists, diverse communities, and multidisciplinary presentations,” Kuehl said. “We are confident that this relationship will allow the Ford to continue to grow in service to Los Angeles and its communities of artists. We have taken great strides over the past years in renovating, restoring, and enhancing the physical structure of this historic complex and we are excited to see what the future holds.”
“The Los Angeles Philharmonic is honored to partner with the County to present and support the broad spectrum of LA’s artistic community in this beautiful and intimate venue,” said Chad Smith, Chief Executive Officer, Los Angeles Philharmonic Association.
“The Ford holds such an important place in LA’s cultural history and is a beloved neighbor of the Hollywood Bowl,” Smith said. “The LA Phil is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion across our organization and we look forward to merging that vision with the Ford’s and are humbled to take on the responsibility in service to expanding access to affordable and diverse arts and cultural experiences for Los Angeles.”
Gustavo Dudamel, Music & Artistic Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, added, “It’s such an honor and a privilege for us to be able to bring our musical and artistic ideas to the extraordinary Ford Theatres, and to share these experiences with new audiences and communities. I truly believe that culture is a human right, and I’m so excited to be working with Los Angeles County’s cultural equity and inclusion initiative in order to make that vision a reality.”
Olga Garay-English, Executive Director, John Anson Ford Theatres, said, “It has been my sincere privilege to shepherd the Ford Theatres, ably aided by a diverse and committed staff and board of directors. During my tenure, we added a presenting series of world-renowned performers, supported innovative new work through an artist residency and commissioning program, received green certification for the venue, and provided access to the arts for foster youth and their families. Among many gains, the long-term artistic and financial future of the Ford Theatres will be greatly enhanced by the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s stewardship of this historic venue.”