Behind the Scenes at A.C.T.: An Interview with Accounting Manager Sharon Boyce

By Annie Sears

Sixteen years ago, Sharon Boyce applied for a finance associate position at A.C.T. She didn’t get it, at least not right away. The general manager promised he’d call if something opened up. Boyce said, “That sounds great!” But she was really thinking, “Yeah right.”

Sure enough, six months later, A.C.T. offered her a different position: donor systems coordinator. She accepted. Having constructed props and sets throughout high school and college, she knew she wanted to be a part of a theater. Three years later, the finance position she’d originally applied for reopened. This time, she was hired.

Boyce, who was recently promoted to accounting manager, has now worked at A.C.T. for 15 years, which grants her a unique perspective on where A.C.T. has been and where A.C.T. is going.
A.C.T. Accounting Manager Sharon Boyce. Photo by Annie Sears.

What do you enjoy most about what you do?

I enjoy reconciling our accounts. It’s a lot of work because there’s so much to look through, and it sometimes takes three or four days to complete. But I see it as a big, number puzzle. And I love puzzles.

I also like doing settlements for each mainstage show. I look at our ticket revenue, and then I consider the royalties, facility fees, handling fees, credit card fees, internet fees, and all sorts of craziness. That all has to be worked into a final settlement, which ends up being long, sometimes seven pages of stuff. It’s interesting to see both the productions themselves and how they do financially.

Over your 15 years, how have you seen A.C.T. change?
I’ve worked under several executive directors, and each one has shaken things up. Ellen Richard especially was instrumental in buying and planning the reconstruction of The Strand. That set off an explosion of new possibilities and brought in younger audiences. Our Education & Community Programs department has also expanded, ushering in an influx of young people studying in our M.F.A. and Young Conservatory programs. I love having young people around. They bring so much energy. I’ll often hear people singing up and down the halls or around the deck—and they’re good!

What’s one of your favorite memories from working at A.C.T.?

I had only been working at A.C.T. for two weeks when we had our annual gala. I was collecting money from those who purchased items from our auction. When it was my turn to approach a buyer, it was Annette Bening. So that was pretty neat.

What are you looking forward to in the future at A.C.T.?

In the past, figuring out how to behave within our work environment has been an issue. We’re a $20+ million company, so we want to carry ourselves professionally. But we’re also a theater, so we want to maintain an artistic, free-thinking, fun atmosphere—which I love! Those two approaches don’t usually go together, but with all of A.C.T.’s current transitions, including Pam MacKinnon taking over as artistic director and Jennifer Bielstein as executive director, I think they’ll coalesce better.

Interested in becoming a part of our community? A.C.T. is still looking for a marketing/PR fellow, graphic design fellow, and development fellow, among other fellowships, for the 2018–19 season. Click here to learn how to apply.

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