Josh Stoltzfus, an expert in American music and veteran of the local arts community who helped run the annual Columbia Festival of the Arts for the past five years, has been chosen as the new director of programming for the Artisphere urban arts and cultural center in Arlington County.
Stoltzfus, who was part of the team who selected artists for the annual 16-day, multi-disciplinary Columbia Festival, also helped budget and manage its partnerships, and he worked with the Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts prior to that. He specializes in jazz, blues and popular music and has been a tour manager, artist representative and performer for more than two decades.
The 39-year-old Silver Spring resident said he’s “tremendously excited to be a part of such a young organization that’s growing, and be able to help shape what they are doing as we head into the future.” Artisphere has been recognized for its focus on the connections between living artists and audiences, Stoltzfus said. “It’s fairly unique for the area, and we’re hoping to build on that.”
Artisphere, which opened in 2010, has three visual arts and new media galleries, a domed theater, an artists-in-residence studio and a 4,000-square-foot ballroom. It hosts a film series; dance, theater and musical concerts; and a range of classes for children and adults.
“Immediately what I expect from him is to help develop a range of programs that reaches across disciplines and sizes — from a-one man show to a larger spectacle,” said Jose Ortiz, Artisphere’s executive director. “Certainly with Josh’s experience working with different groups and audiences, we are hoping he will help us expand our reach.”
Stoltzfus replaces Rosanna Ruscetti, who left for undisclosed reasons. He is expected to begin at the end of the month and will start working on fall programs.