Marion Palace Theatre Announces New Executive Director

Posted on October 12, 2021

MARION, Ohio – Following an extensive search, the Marion Palace Theatre’s Search Committee and Board of Directors is proud to announce that Marion resident Kirk Detweiler will lead the historic theatre as its new Executive Director beginning in November.

“I first appeared on the Palace stage at the age of 15 in the 1977 production of Oliver!,” says Detweiler. “Having the opportunity to be the Executive Director of the Palace Theatre in Marion is a dream come true.”

A graduate of River Valley High School, Detweiler earned a BA in telecommunications with minors in theatre and dance from Kent State University in 1984.

From 1985 to 2020, he worked in the cruise industry, starting as a production singer and working his way up to the position of Cruise Director in 1989. He spent his career at sea – 24 years with Royal Caribbean International and 8 years with Silversea Cruises. In 2019, he was hired as the Entertainment Director for a new cruise line, Jalesh Cruises based in Mumbai, India. The covid pandemic brought his career at sea to a screeching halt and he has spent the last year as the Entertainment Director at a land-based resort on the Caribbean island of St. Maarten.

This announcement is the culmination of several months of work by the Search Committee. “I really appreciate everyone’s efforts throughout this process,” says committee chair, Sue Jacob. “Kirk has such a love for the theatre and the Marion Community. We look forward to what he’ll bring to this position carrying the Palace forward.”

He follows outgoing Executive Director Bev Ford who is scheduled to retire this November after 22 years of service (including a decade in her current role).

Built in 1928, The Marion Palace Theatre is a historic atmospheric theatre in which to experience the arts. Each year, the organization presents a wide variety of entertainment that takes place on the main stage and in the adjacent May Pavilion. With a focus on widespread appeal and “something for everyone,” patrons experience concerts with national touring artists, local productions, regional bands and musicians, current and classic films, and more. For more information and a calendar of upcoming events call 740-383-2101 or visit

Current track