New executive director announced for Valley Performing Arts Center

A new executive director was named for the Valley Performing Arts Center (VPAC), Harry Hellenbrand, provost and vice president for academic affairs, announced Wednesday.

Thor Steingraber, former vice president of programming at The Music Center in downtown Los Angeles, said he was pleased and looking forward to the opportunity.

“The plans that are in my mind currently include broadening the array of programs at the facility, incorporating the students, faculty and also the local community in Northridge and San Fernando Valley to the maximum extent possible,” Steingraber said.

Steingraber also said he wants to honor the previous successes of the VPAC.

Steve Thachuk, interim director of the VPAC, said Steingraber will be great at helping to connect with the community.

“This was an extensive search,” Thachuk said of the process of finding a new executive director. “Of all the candidates, what impressed me most was he has deep artistic background and rich administrative background, which makes him perfect for the job.”

Since 1997, Steingraber has held various positions as a stage director and assistant director at many international venues, opera houses and festivals.

Steingraber wants to make events at the VPAC more tailored to students.

“I look forward to working with students to bring to the venue performances and events that they’re interested in and more generally integrating the performing arts with campus life and vice versa, the campus community with the Performing Arts Center,” Steingraber said.