Kelley Dorhauer, business manager
Kelley started working with Eighth Blackbird in June 2015 and handles the group’s finance, business, and HR issues. She loves an organized, color-coded spreadsheet as much as Liz Lemon. Previously she worked at Lyric Opera of Chicago and Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music.
When she isn’t taking care of business, Kelley immerses herself in music. She received her masters degree in saxophone performance from DePaul University and undergraduate degree from Elmhurst College in music business. She performs in several Chicago-area ensembles, most notably Heisenberg Uncertainty Players. Kelley recently welcomed a beautiful baby boy into the world.
Annie Higgins, company and operations manager
Annie joined the family in September 2013 as part-time Company Manager. She works on coordinating the sometimes complex travel schedules of the ensemble and accompanying members, and also works closely with Madeleine to assist with various production needs. Annie comes to 8bb after having worked for 6 years at CASA, a non-profit that advocates for foster children in Cook County. She earned her B.S.W. from University of Montana, where she also studied music and worked at a Russian travel agency.
In her down time, she moonlights as the songwriter for the Chicago band Weatherman, and started the composer interview forum, Secret Weapon. She loves riding her bike to work, listening to hip hop, and reading detective novels.
Justin Peters, office and facilities manager
Justin joined the Eighth Blackbird team in December of 2016 as the Office and Facilities Manager. He helps to make sure the office and studio run smoothly by maintaining mailing lists, scheduling piano tunings, managing gear moves, and making sure the staff and ensemble has everything they need.
Alex Monroe, grants manager
Alex joined Eighth Blackbird in November 2016. A native of St. Louis, MO, he holds degrees in percussion performance from Northwestern University (M.M.) and Truman State University (B.M.) and is completing a certificate in Philanthropy and Nonprofit Management from the Northwestern School of Professional Studies. Prior to joining Eighth Blackbird, Alex served as General Manager of the Lake Forest Symphony in Lake Forest, IL. Alex is a strong advocate of new music and collaborative art. In 2014, he co-founded beyond this point, an experimental percussion group specializing in cross-disciplinary work.