Lisa Grele Barrie

“I always was singing, dancing and playing an instrument.I took acrobatics and ballet. I was always in the choir.

My husband is Tom Barrie–it was his job that brought us here. He was Director of the School of Architecture and now is a tenured professor. My older son, Ian, is 19 and he just went off to Art School at Monserrat Art School, and my younger son is Simon. He’s 16 and he’s a junior at Enloe. My boys were part of this pack of boys and they went to Conn down the street and spent a lot of time at the creek. They’ve had many adventures and perhaps some of them I’d call Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn-ish.”

“When I moved here, I was chair of the children’s committee for about five or six years, with Barbara McMahan, and our goal was to bring our children together to build community, but also to do great things for the neighborhood. If there was a flood or a natural catastrophe, we would set up a lemonade stand to raise money. We had something called the “Second Saturday Scene,” where we’d all get together and do something invariably that was socially responsible–whether it was picking up trash or selling their toys to raise money for charity. We tried to engage our kids in fun things, but also things that had purpose or meaning.”

“More than theater, my life has been driven by purpose–why are you doing the things that you do? For me, it’s about making a difference through art. Leading an organization has changed me. It’s helped me become more resilient. It’s helped me develop a thicker skin. Because always in positions of leadership, there will be people who disagree with you.”

“Is there anything I regret? I think people can get bogged down in regrets when in fact when we do anything, we bring the best skills we have at the time. The more we push ourselves to fail, the more we innovate. So I believe we shouldn’t regret anything.”

Lisa Grele Barrie lives at 811 North Bloodworth Street with her husband Tom Barrie and younger son, Simon Barrie. She is President and CEO of North Carolina Theatre.

To hear her interview, press “play” below.

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Friday, February 3rd, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized

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