Driven by a lifelong passion for music in all its varied forms, Arvind Manocha is President and CEO of Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, a position he has held since January 2013. An expert in both artistic programming and operations management, Manocha is expanding the Foundation’s vision of what it means to be Wolf Trap.
From major pop acts to children’s shows to opera and more, Manocha directs the Foundation’s year-round performing arts programming – among the most wide-ranging and diverse in the music business. Additionally, he oversees the full scope of the Foundation’s educational activities, including its nationally recognized arts education programs, which are implemented at 18 affiliate sites and in 30 states nationwide, and Wolf Trap Opera, one of the nation’s premier young artist training programs. Wolf Trap enjoys a unique public-private partnership with the National Park Service, a relationship that Manocha stewards, working across the Foundation and with NPS to fulfill Wolf Trap’s exclusive responsibilities as the first and only national park for the performing arts. In all of Wolf Trap’s work, Manocha and the Foundation strive for excellence and diversity across a broad spectrum of programming, as well as accessible, affordable performing arts experiences for all patrons.
Upon joining the Foundation, Manocha pledged to honor Wolf Trap’s history as a beloved urban oasis for arts and culture, while introducing fresh artists and updated programming relevant to a diversity of arts lovers. Under his leadership, major popular acts never before seen at Wolf Trap – Bryson Tiller, Ricky Martin, A.R. Rahman, Lenny Kravitz, and Sufjan Stevens – are attracting new and younger audiences, while favorites like Sting, Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, and Dolly Parton continue to draw longtime Wolf Trap fans. With a renewed emphasis on the fine arts, Manocha has overseen highly lauded engagements by Yo-Yo Ma, The Philadelphia Orchestra, Wynton Marsalis, and American Ballet Theatre. Committed to innovation in all aspects of the Foundation’s work, he is spearheading digital streaming of Wolf Trap Opera productions and the national expansion of Wolf Trap’s acclaimed early childhood arts education model.
Manocha’s goals of strengthening Wolf Trap are borne out in increased philanthropic support and exceptional audience turnout across all its venues – the Filene Center, The Barns and Children’s Theatre-in-the-Woods. Since the start of Manocha’s tenure, Wolf Trap has expanded its community of supporters with record-breaking increases in new memberships, per-show sales are up 16% and more performances are selling out than ever before.
Prior to joining Wolf Trap, Manocha worked at the legendary Hollywood Bowl, which under his leadership was named “Best Major Outdoor Venue in America” by Pollstar magazine eight years in a row. As Chief Operating Officer of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, Manocha oversaw a wide range of artistic and operational functions at both the historic Hollywood amphitheater and the Association’s primary home, the landmark Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles. His tenure at the Hollywood Bowl was marked by record-high attendance, increased diversity in concert offerings, and his management of a multi-year capital improvement plan, which included both the rehabilitation of historic structures and the construction of new buildings.
Manocha, 46, grew up in Ohio, where he listened to everything from Indian ragas to Beethoven to Queen. He graduated with honors from Cornell University and earned his master’s degree as a Marshall Scholar from the University of Cambridge. Upon graduation, he joined McKinsey and Co. as a strategy consultant, serving clients in Los Angeles and London. A 2016 recipient of the Washington Business Journal’s Minority Business Leader Award, Manocha has served on several nonprofit boards, and currently serves on the boards of Levine Music and Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce. Manocha and his husband, Gideon Malone, make their home in Great Falls, Virginia.