DSM weighs in with more information about Jenkins firing

The news broke this morning that Michael Jenkins, longtime president of the Dallas Summer Musicals, had been fired. The DSM was largely silent about the reasons, but late today released a further statement regarding leadership changes at the organization.

“For some, this announcement is difficult to accept, but DSM’s Executive Committee [EC] believed that it was clear that it’s time for a change,” said volunteer chairman Ted Munselle. He further explained that for the last year or more, the EC “has been immersed in an intense assessment of the organization, with special attention on management accountability and professional examinations of DSM’s financial performance including reporting, profitability, expenditures and investments.” The board stated that the DSM has suffered losses every season, except one since 2008.

“Theater is a difficult and competitive business, and the EC was concerned about DSM’s financial losses as well as the quality of its financial reporting,” said Munselle, noting that the “forensic examination” of the financials prompted the decision. “We engaged a leading national law firm to lead a team of forensic investigators, including a group of auditors from a Big Four CPA firm, to conduct a forensic examination of the organization’s books and records.”

Munselle’s release said that last Thursday, in a near unanimous vote, the EC decided that it was time for a change in leadership.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Michael Jenkins is out as Dallas Summer Musicals president

Emily-Koch-as-Elphaba---Photo-by-Joan-MarcusMy friends Michael Granberry and Nancy Churnin, a real-life couple and both staff writers at the Dallas Morning News, have collaborated on a story I find interesting: The sudden firing of Dallas Summer Musicals‘ long-standing leader, Michael Jenkins. In the piece, which went live this morning, Jenkins accuses the DSM of age discrimination (he’s 74); the DMN announced an interim director, and said Jenkins’ termination was effectively immediately, but otherwise declined to comment on the details at this time.

The DSM, which will mark its 75th anniversary this June, is in the middle of its current season with Wicked (through May 22, pictured), and continues with Ragtime (opening May 24), Bullets Over Broadway (June 14) and 42nd Street (June 28).

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

DSM’s Jenkins wins best presenter award

In my recent interview with Jeff Calhoun, the director of the national tour of 9 to 5: The Musical (which opens tonight at Fair Park), Calhoun praises Dallas Summer Musicals managing director Michael Jenkins as a great friend and mentor.

Well, Calhoun isn’t the only one singing Jenkins’ praises. Last week, Jenkins was awarded the Samuel J. L’Hommedieu Award as “outstanding presenter” by the Broadway League, an 80-year-old trade association of the Broadway industry. The award ceremony was hosted by George Hamilton, who will appear in the DSM’s tour of La Cage aux Folles next year.

Under Jenkins, the DSM has won two Tony Awards (best revival of a play for Boeing, Boeing and best theatrical event for Jay Johnson: My Two and Only) and produced many more hits.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones