Kelly Colburn named Flying V’s executive director

Known for her work as a designer, digital producer, and director, Colburn has served as Flying V's Artistic Lead of Theatre since 2021.

Following a three-month search, Flying V’s Board of Trustees has named Kelly Colburn
(she/they) as the new Executive Director of Flying V, the Montgomery County-based performing arts organization.

Colburn, who previously served on Flying V’s Artistic Leadership team, is an established designer, digital producer, and director in the DC area. Her Projections and Multimedia design work has garnered her a Helen Hayes win, and multiple nominations.

Kelly Colburn

“We’re thrilled for Kelly to lead Flying V,” says Michael Beder, Flying V’s Board secretary. “Kelly has played a critical role in the Company’s transformation, and her innovative work at Flying V and elsewhere has earned her wide respect across the DC arts community. We’re also grateful to the many strong candidates who applied.”

Colburn was announced into the new position at the post-show reception for 1/1000: one space, a thousand possibilities, which Flying V co-produced with Orange Grove Dance.

“Announcing Kelly at 1/1000 this past weekend was the perfect context,” said Katherine Offutt, Board member and former Executive Director. “I have no doubt that Flying V, under Kelly’s administrative leadership, will echo the beats of her art: unique, creative, and welcoming. Kelly’s projects bring people together around sharing the process of creation; she’ll bring that same vision and skillset to this role.”

Colburn is honored the Company has chosen her to succeed Offutt in the role. “I love Flying V. I love the range of work we do. I love how adventurous and brave our storytelling is. It lets our artists and audiences be themselves fully and authentically – that’s the magic of nerd and pop culture. It’s community, it’s shared interests, and shared love for things that elevate our experiences of the world, shape who we are, and who we want to be.”

First working with Flying V as a director on Crystal Creek Motel (2019), Colburn joined the Leadership team in 2021 as the Artistic Lead of Theatre, where she curated workshops on performance and technology, produced development residencies, and led Flying V’s first
post-pandemic mainstage theatre production, Monstress. Her tenure has focused on uplifting femme, queer, and BIPOC stories while blurring the boundaries of theater, dance, and immersive experiences.

Frequent collaborator Raymond Caldwell, the outgoing Producing Artistic Director of Theatre Alliance, says, “I’m thrilled to see Kelly move into executive leadership at Flying V! Kelly is one of the brightest, kindest, and most talented arts leaders in Washington, DC. Their skill and vision will launch Flying V into a new generation that is rooted at the intersection of community and cutting-edge experiences! I can’t wait to see what they build…the future is bright at Flying V!”

As Executive Director, Colburn will continue to work with the company’s Artistic Leads to further Flying V’s mission. Joey Ibanez, Co-Artistic Lead of Fights at Flying V says, “She is a proven engaging and imaginative artist both at Flying V and in her own work, creating art that asks me to dream a little bit wider and look a little bit deeper. As a leader, she has shown to be a central point in creating community and conversation centered on our work, art, and culture. I personally look forward to working with her in an all-new, all-different role to further create a Flying V that empowers artists, creatives, and the imagination.”

While transitioning into the role of Executive Director, Colburn will stay on as co-show runner for the soon-to-be-announced mainstage this fall. The announcement will be made public in April. Flying V plans to begin a search to fill its Artistic Lead of Theatre position later this year.

Flying V is a performing arts nonprofit in Montgomery County, Maryland, creating nerd and pop culture-infused performances. They are known for larger-than-life moments on small stages, and immersive world-building that connect audiences, regardless of medium, with the stories they tell as well as each other.


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