France-Merrick Performing Arts Center/Hippodrome Theatre
Before he took over as president of the Hippodrome Theatre at the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center five years ago, Ronald Legler spent a quarter-century in the performing arts, including stints as a booking agent for touring Broadway productions in New York City and as Executive Director of the Orlando (Florida) Ballet.
Since coming to Baltimore, he’s led a resurgence at the historic, century-old Hippodrome. Subscriptions have doubled and overall ticket sales have grown steadily.
His success here, Legler said, is due in part to his previous experience. Asked about his strengths, Legler cited his ability to leverage “my relationships with Broadway producers and booking agents to secure stronger shows.
“Our Broadway product rivals any major performing arts center in America, giving our patrons an experience that keeps them coming back,” he said. “Giving our patrons an experience that keeps them coming back is a priority for our entire team.”
Legler also has overseen a long list of physical improvements at the theater, including a renovated lounge and administrative offices and the installation of security cameras and outdoor lighting.
Legler also is leading an effort to renovate and re-imagine the M&T Bank Pavilion.
According to the Hippodrome Foundation’s website, the goal of the renovation is to create “a much-needed, accessible and affordable resource for arts, entertainment and education for students, community members and all Marylanders.”
The finished product, Legler predicted, “will be a game-changer for downtown Baltimore … allowing for diversified programming and audience development.”