The Work We Do: Dan Binderman, Suffolk Theater

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I’m Dan Binderman. I’m the general and artistic director of the historic Suffolk Theater here in Riverhead. I came here about five years ago to help work with this amazing building and bring some world-class art here, worthy of this space. 

I came from New York City five years ago or so — Brooklyn, where I was living. And I was doing shows in New York with the World Music Institute. I don’t know any venue like this in New York City. I think we’re doing something completely different.

A day in the life of me is varied and mixed. I can’t say for sure what a day in the life of me is, honestly. There are days when each department has needs and I’m managing each department. They’re managing and I’m overseeing, but if they need help, I’m there.

There are times that we have to bring in instruments and things that might not be available locally. The building certainly has needs and there are days when I’m working on the building. There are days when I’m programming and working with agents.

The end result is somebody comes in here, they’ve had a hard day and they’re tired. Maybe somebody dragged them, their partner dragged them — “Oh, I don’t want to see that.’ And they come out and you see they’ve had a great time. They feel refreshed. They feel like, ‘This is the music I love, this is the comedy I love, I had a great meal, I’m having fun, I worked all week and I’m having a great time.” There’s nothing like that.

Finding out the artists had a great time is really rewarding. You know, we’ve worked with some legendary artists and also some local, great, amazing artists, and when they come here and they’re like, “We love this venue. You guys treated us so well. We had a great time. Everything came together.” I just — it’s really rewarding.

I’m a musician myself and working with musicians and working with artists, it’s rewarding that everybody is a part of that. The audience is a part of that; the artist is a part of that.

“The Work We Do” is made possible by Peconic Landing.