Mary G. Madigan, the director of Composers Now in New York City and a longtime administrator for music organizations and festivals, has been named executive director of Santa Fe Pro Musica, effective Feb. 17.
“The founders, board, and staff of Santa Fe Pro Musica greeted me with their authentic joy and deep commitment to the organization,” Madigan, who was hired after a nationwide search, wrote in an email Wednesday. “We will be considering what it means to be a classical music organization in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 2020 and the future.”
At Composers Now, Madigan worked for a nonprofit that supports composers. She also served as director of programs for the nonprofit Meet the Composer for two years after serving as promotion manager for the international music publisher Boosey & Hawkes from 2001-08.
Madigan holds degrees in arts administration from Wesleyan University in Connecticut, the University of Southern California and the University of Pennsylvania. She started her career as an assistant manager of the Vermont Mozart Festival in 1990 under artistic director Melvin Kaplan, becoming general manager in 1992.
She’s served as director of her own organization, Madigan Arts, which has provided networking opportunities and project and career advising for artists, for the past 10 years.
“Her work with festival environments, as an executive director, plus her work with musicians and composers across the spectrum — she’s extraordinarily talented and well connected,” said Bernard van der Hoeven, chairman of the Santa Fe Pro Musica Board of Trustees. “We’re at a very interesting point in Pro Musica right now because Mary is joining us with this broad experience, and we are aiming to announce a new position, coincident with a performance of Joseph Haydn’s oratorio The Creation, in April.”
Early last year, the current artistic director and composer, Thomas O’Connor, who co-founded Pro Musica in 1980 with his wife, Carol Redman, announced his intention to retire at the end of the 2019-20 season. The announcement was followed in September by then-Executive Director Elizabeth Harcombe’s decision to leave by the end of the year.
Harcombe served as executive director for four years. She left to serve in a consulting position at the Academy for the Love of Learning in Santa Fe.
The changes at Pro Musica come in the wake of new leadership at the Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, as well as Performance Santa Fe. In March, Daniel Crupi succeeded Santa Fe Symphony founder and Executive Director Gregory W. Heltman, who resigned in May 2018, after working with the organization for 34 years. In July, Chad Hilligus took over the reins of Performance Santa Fe from former Director Jonathan Winkle, who served for four years.
It may be too early to tell how the changes in executive and creative leadership will affect Pro Musica, but Madigan said she understands the importance of being at the helm of an organization in a city with a thriving arts and culture scene.
“The social and cultural contexts of Santa Fe are significant,” she said.
“I think it’s important to acknowledge the uniqueness of the community and its history and to ask how we might meet that specific uniqueness as an organization. I can’t say yet what that will look like because this envisioning will be a collaborative effort among Pro Musica’s leadership once a new artistic director is on board. But, no doubt, there’s a dynamic future in the works for Santa Fe Pro Musica that I think will garner national attention.”
This story has been amended to reflect the following correction. A previous version of this story incorrectly reported that Madigan had worked for the Peabody Award-winning podcast Meet the Composer.