New boss appointed at Doncaster's Cast theatre
A new boss has stepped into the limelight at Doncaster's Cast theatre.
Deborah Rees has been appointed as the Waterdale venue's new director, a role she will take up in March 2017 following 10 years at the helm of The Roses Theatre in Tewkesbury.
Since opening in 2013, Cast has welcomed over 200,000 audience members through its doors and Deborah is hoping to continue the work set in place by Kully Thiarai, who she replaces.
Alongside her long-standing directorship at The Roses Theatre, Deborah has a catalogue of arts experience, which includes being Programmes Director at Script in Birmingham, Administrative Director of Worcester Swan Theatre and founder Director of Artworcs, an arts production company.
Deborah has also been employed in a wide variety of freelance and consultancy roles and currently acts as Board Member of Gloucestershire Dance and a founder Board Member of Create Gloucestershire. Deborah is an Arts Council England Quality Assessor and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
She said: 'I am thrilled with my appointment to lead Cast at this time and aim to continue to build on the fantastic start that Cast has made since opening in 2013.
"Cast has a tremendous programme and a national reputation and I am looking forward to starting next year and working with the team.’
Deborah takes over from Mathew Russell, who has been the company’s Interim Executive Director since May 2016, following the departure of Kully Thiarai who joined National Theatre Wales as its new Artistic Director. Mathew will continue to lead Cast until Deborah starts in post.
Cast’s Chair of the Board of Directors, Andy Carver, said: "Deborah joins Cast at crucial time in the company’s journey and I’m truly thrilled that she is to lead the company in building on Cast’s acclaimed success.
"Cast is going from strength to strength and both I and the board are confident that Deborah’s leadership will be an invaluable asset to Cast at a pivotal point in its development."
Arts Council England’s Karen Durham said: "Cast has enjoyed a fantastic first three years in Doncaster, and we are delighted that there is a new Director taking up the reins after Kully Thiarai’s tenure. The ambition, artistic integrity and diversity of Cast’s programme resonates within the region and further afield.
"We wish Deborah Rees and the arts centre every success in this next period."
Councillor Bill Mordue of Doncaster Council said: "Doncaster Council is delighted with the appointment of Deborah and we look forward to working with her in partnership to further develop this fabulous facility for the people of Doncaster.
"We look ahead with excitement at the prospect of building on Kully and Mathew’s commitment in promoting investment and change in Doncaster through world-class cultural experiences."