Home Back Issues July/August 2013 Cynthia Rider balances life, work, play

Cynthia Rider balances life, work, play

| Print |  Email
Articles - July/August 2013
Monday, July 08, 2013


0713 FOB LWP
Cynthia Rider cradles the skull from Hamlet on OSF's Elizabethan Stage/Allen Pavilion.
// Photo by Jamie Lusch

Cynthia Rider became executive director of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in December 2012, replacing long-running director Paul Nicholson. Rider was previously managing director of the Kansas City Repertory Theatre, where she was known for raising $7 million for a capital/endowment campaign and launching an ambitious five-year plan. She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Boston University. Rider also is an accomplished actress; she launched her career as a performer at the Alley Theatre in Houston and was named Best Actress by the Kansas City paper The Pitch for Bed Among the Lentils at the Kansas City Fringe Festival. She lives in Ashland with her husband, Stuart, and 15-year-old daughter, Lily. Her son, Sam, 18, recently finished his freshman year at the University of Kansas.


“I’m passionate about my work. I love storytelling of all kinds, from books to movies to plays. I like exploring new places — I like going somewhere and living there for a while, not just traveling. I’ve been in Ashland since December and I love it. It’s such a beautiful part of the country. I enjoy all the restaurants and shopping at places that are unique to Ashland. I think it’s the diversity of things to do here that makes people fall in love with the area.”


“My work with the theater is a seven-days-a-week, 24-hours-a-day kind of world, but when I do find ways to get away, I like to do day trips. I just went up to King Estate Winery. This weekend I have family in town and we are going to go to the redwoods, where I’ve never been. I like walking on the local trails; it’s so peaceful. I try hard to make time to get out and see the beautiful part of the country we’re in.”


“I’m a very avid reader. I like all types of books. I just read Far From the Trees by Michael Wellman, which was really good. On the other end of the spectrum, I was given a set of Maisie Dobbs mysteries. They’re light, fun detective novels. I want to read — well, re-read — The Great Gatsby; it feels like the right time. I try to mix it up and read something nonfiction, then switch to something light and entertaining.”


“I love the audiences that come to OSF because they love this place and they love theater. They’re a very dedicated and curious audience. I also love the intelligence, talent and creativity of the people I work with, from the staff to the volunteers. One of the first performances I saw at OSF was Animal Crackers last year. It was such a joyous performance. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed that much in one day before.”


“I have so many favorite plays, but one of the first professional productions I saw was The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds at Kansas City Repertory Theatre, so that play has a special place in my heart. Once I saw Much Ado About Nothing and Cyrano de Bergerac on the same stage on the same day in New York. Later that night my husband proposed to me. He’s an actor; we share a love of the theater.”


More Articles

A Good Leap Forward

September 2014
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Agriculture businesses ramp up to meet international demand as workforce and succession challenges loom.


Shipping News

September 2014
Tuesday, August 26, 2014

In 2012 The Dalles, a city of some 14,400 located 75 miles east of Portland and often seen as the poor cousin to adjacent Hood River, completed a massive project to revitalize its dock.


Fork & Bottle

October 2014
Thursday, September 25, 2014

National media can’t get enough of Oregon’s pinot noir, artisan-food purveyors and lively, independent film scene.


Report Card

September 2014
Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Strong public schools shore up the economy, survey respondents say. But local schools demonstrate lackluster performance.


Portland rises

Monday, August 18, 2014

IMG 2551Portland is in the middle of another construction boom, with residential and office projects springing up downtown, in the Pearl and Old Town. OB Web Editor Jessica Ridgway documents the new wave.


The Backstory

October 2014
Thursday, September 25, 2014

In our cover story this month, Wendy Collie, CEO of New Seasons Market, and Kim Malek, owner of Salt & Straw, discuss their rapidly growing businesses and Portland’s red hot food scene. The conversation provides an interesting lens through which to explore trends in the grocery store and restaurant sectors.


Podcast: Interview with Pete Friedes

Contributed Blogs
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

082714-thumb friedesbookTom Cox interviews Pete Friedes, author of "The 2R Manager," about becoming a Best Boss.

Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02