UK Theatre – the UK’s largest theatre membership organisation – has appointed Fiona Allan as its new president, succeeding Rachel Tackley. Allan is also artistic director and chief executive at Birmingham Hippodrome, and formerly worked at Leicester’s Curve Theatre.
The announcement was made at UK Theatre’s annual general meeting at the Royal College of Surgeons in London. Anna Williams, finance director at Birmingham Royal Ballet, was re-elected as vice president.
‘Theatre and performing arts are crucial to the UK’s reputation as a creative industries global leader, yet are constantly challenged to evidence economic, cultural and social benefits,’ commented Allan. ‘Arts leadership needs to be more flexible, resilient and entrepreneurial than ever before.’ She added that, ‘These are challenging times for theatre and performing arts organisations in the UK.’
Cassie Chadderton, head of UK Theatre, used the annual general meeting as a platform to call for a diverse range of board members to step forward: ‘While UK Theatre welcomes nominations from any of our professional members, it’s also vital that our Board reflects the growing diversity of our sector. We’d particularly like to hear from people from black and minority ethnic groups and disabled people.’
Since its foundation in 1894 UK Theatre has worked to support theatre companies and performing artists at all levels. It also runs the UK Theatre Awards, runs audience development programmes and campaigns on behalf of theatres and theatre audiences.