(Michael Cooper’s article appeared in The New York Times, 5/4; via Pam Green.)

Joseph V. Melillo will step down as executive producer of the Brooklyn Academy of Music at the end of 2018.CreditTony Cenicola/The New York Times

It is time for the next wave to roll in at the Brooklyn Academy of Music: Joseph V. Melillo, who has helped shape the academy’s cutting-edge aesthetic for more than three decades, will announce on Friday that he plans to step down as executive producer at the end of 2018.

Mr. Melillo, 70, is the last link to the organization’s impresario and visionary leader, Harvey Lichtenstein, who hired him in 1983 as the founding director of the pathbreaking Next Wave Festival. In 1999, Mr. Lichtenstein anointed him as his successor.

As executive producer, Mr. Melillo was a lower-key presence than his mentor, but the academy remained a place to catch the vanguard, as well as to see Derek Jacobi as King Lear and Simon Russell Beale as Hamlet.

With Mr. Melillo’s departure, the academy will truly enter the post-Harvey era. (Karen Brooks Hopkins, Mr. Lichtenstein’s chosen successor as the institution’s president, stepped down in 2015.) It will have to find ways to keep its cutting-edge reputation now that it is part of the establishment, and to continue refreshing its avant-garde roster to keep it from seeming old guard.

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Photo: NY Daily News


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