Storyhouse is delighted to announce the appointment of Suzie Henderson to the role of Creative Director.
The new role follows a management re-organisation after the departure of Artistic Director Alex Clifton, with a re-focus on the work of managing the charity’s substantial Creative Communities portfolio, driving inclusion, and community-led programming.
Suzie is currently Head of Creative Development, running the artistic team at renowned young people’s theatre company Contact in Manchester, where she has been a leading voice and industry advocate for 14 years. She joins Storyhouse in January.
As Creative Director, Suzie will lead community, inclusion, and education strategies, increasing and diversifying the voices that make Storyhouse’s work. She will also oversee Young Storyhouse and steer emerging talent pipelines.
Suzie brings a wealth of experience in engagement and participation; nurturing talent, youth leadership and governance, co-creation, programming and producing. She joined Contact as its Head of Creative Development in 2007 and led the Manchester venue’s artistic team to deliver an exciting cross-art form programme of live and digital performances and events.
She is also a steering board member of Manchester’s Cultural Education Partnership MADE, co-chair of its Youth Voice task group and a board member at Plymouth-based Beyond Face which provides opportunities for artists of the Global Majority to live, work and thrive in the South West theatre sector.
Storyhouse CEO Andrew Bentley said today: “When we set this role after a little re-organisation, the intention was to provide creative leadership to an enhanced focus on inclusion-based programming and in particular Young Storyhouse. We want to elevate these voices that make our work, further empower the forces of creative democracy and of our young people. This job is tailor made for Suzie and we are absolutely delighted to be welcoming her to our team, we really could not have made a better appointment”
Suzie Henderson added: “I am beyond thrilled to be joining Storyhouse a venue that is so well loved by its local community and provides so many entry points for young people, communities and audiences through its library, theatres and cinema spaces. The opportunities for inclusion based programming and co-creation are vast and I am excited to get stuck in!”
The re-organisation of Storyhouse’s senior leadership also includes the elevation to the new post of Producer (Storyhouse Originals), for long standing Storyhouse producer Helen Redcliffe; and is part of a move to drive the charity’s creative programming functions to an even more collaborative, devolved and diverse future.
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Images: Kat Hannon
Suzie Henderson, pictured in Storyhouse
Storyhouse is one of the UK’s foremost cultural charities, its Chester home incorporating a library, theatres and a cinema. It is one of the country’s most successful new arts buildings, with more than one million customer visits each year.
The pioneering new library within Storyhouse, where members of the community work alongside city librarians, boasts the longest opening hours of any UK public library and is open every day until 11pm. It runs over 2,000 sessions a year for marginalised communities
The company also runs a highly successful theatre company, Storyhouse Originals, and the country’s most successful regional open-air theatre, in the city’s Grosvenor Park.
Storyhouse holds the title as the UK’s Most Welcoming Theatre and was the overall national winner in the 2018 Guardian Public Service Awards.