Marketing & Engagement Manager
Amy is an independent producer and curator based in Leeds. She is Creative Director of Transform, taking responsibility for the organisation artistically and strategically.
Amy was previously Associate Producer at Leeds Playhouse, one of the largest producing theatres in the North of England, for four years. During her time at the Playhouse, she established the artist development programme, produced special projects and shows, and led on Transform as a venue based festival. She left the Playhouse in 2014 to focus on developing Transform as an independent, citywide and international organisation. Amy has curated and produced eight festival editions, alongside curating Spirit of Change for the Barbican, London and a guest programme for Battersea Arts Centre. Her commissioning and production credits include the UK Theatre award winning Three Sisters by RashDash, and the Fringe First award winning The Believers Are But Brothers by Javaad Alipoor. She has participated in the European Festivals Association Atelier for Young Festival Managers, and has been a recipient of the Artists International Development Award on two occasions. Amy is a mentor to a number of artists and producers, and lectures on producing and festival management at University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University.
Amy originally trained with Fuel, London Artists Projects, HERE Arts Centre (NYC) and studied BA Drama & Theatre Arts at Goldsmiths College, University of London.
Ali is Executive Director at Transform, overseeing the finance, operations and exec producing our biennial international festivals. Prior to this role she was Producer at Transform, overseeing the delivery of Transform 21-22 and a series of new commissions
She is a producer, programmer and practitioner specialising in multi-disciplinary devised work, socially engaged practice and non-traditional, site-responsive experiences. Excited by bold, innovative, politically-charged performance on a local and international level, she is passionate about bringing communities together, developing creative people/projects and reimagining what theatre can look like and who gets to make it.
As an independent producer, Ali has worked with political site-specific theatre company Common Wealth (I Have Met the Enemy (and the enemy is us)), award-winning performance storyteller Debs Newbold (Outrageous Fortune) and the Nesta-awarded ‘Democracy Pioneers’ TheatreState (Say Yes to Tess), of which she is a Co-Director alongside partner in crime Tess Seddon. Ali was previously Programmer and Producer at Square Chapel Arts Centre (Halifax) where she led on the programme of new work, artist development, co-production and commissioning.
After graduating from the University of Leeds with a Theatre and Performance BA in 2011 and spending the first summer of many at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Ali went on to train at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester as a Young Leader, where she gained professional development, expert mentoring and hands-on experience in producing, directing and facilitating.
Tshayi is Project Manager for Transform’s work with young people. She is specifically working on a stand of activity called ‘the collective’ focused on in engaging 16-21’s across the Leeds City Region as creatives, curators and change-makers. Previously, Tshayi oversaw ‘Future Radicals’, a project exploring how young people might have creativity agency at Transform, which culminated as part of Transform 19. Tshayi is a senior youth worker at Getaway girls with over 10 years’ experience of supporting young people through varied capacities such as voice and influence, child exploitation and facilitating high level group work programmes in schools across Leeds that centre on healthy relationships. Tshayi combines both her love of working with young people along with her passion for the arts and performance, this is something Tshayi not only has personal experience as an artist herself but also used creative arts in dance and drama in her work with young people and adults across Leeds. Tshayi has previously been involved in Leeds West Indian Carnival supporting with facilitation of young people in performing carnival dance routines that are performed at different carnivals across the country. “Enabling young people to explore, express and empower themselves, is at the heart of what I do as a professional” – Tshayi Hercules
Ema Boswood is Producer for Transform Festival. Based in Leeds, she is responsible for the delivery of our projects and festivals. Ema began her career in the arts at the Marlborough Theatre in Brighton. Here she coordinated the first New Queers on the Block tour, an LGBTQIA+ artist and community development programme and network working in Blackpool, Bradford, Brighton, Folkestone and Hastings. She delivered several micro-festivals at the Marlborough, including Young, Queer & Skint and Radical Softness, and was responsible for the co-curation and delivery of programmes including Fat Pride and Trans Pride Season. Following this she relocated to Cambridge, where she worked as Arts Producer at Cambridge Junction from 2019 to 2023. Here she focussed on artist development, commissioning and the co-curation of multiple seasons of performance, presenting contemporary theatre, performance art, dance, circus, spoken word and family work. She is a founding member of Cambridge based collective Club Urania who host performance cabaret/club events to counter the lack of LGBTQIA+ spaces in the city. Ema led on the programming and delivery of contemporary performance festival DISRUPT, showcasing the work of over 15 artists in the course of two days across each of the Cambridge Junction venues. Ema studied Drama at Queen Mary, University of London and has a practice as an independent artist. In 2019 she performed her Arts Council supported show Ghost Sexxx in Brighton and Leeds.
Siana-Mae is an experienced Arts Manager and Administrator who has worked in international arts festivals, creative organisations and art charities since 2013. She studied Drama and Theatre Practice at University of Hull, where she specialised in scenic art and stage management (and found her love for spreadsheets).
She has undertaken multiple roles within the sector – from Front of House to Volunteer Management to Producing. Most recently she was Production Administrator at Leeds 2023, where she created and implemented processes to support the delivery of Leeds’ Year of Culture. Before that, she was Events Coordinator with The Mighty Creatives – an arts education charity that specialises in Youth Voice; Office Manager of MetroBoulotDodo (MBD); Administrator and Volunteer Programme Manager at Freedom Festival Arts Trust; and Assistant Producer & Arts Programme Coordinator at Hull UK City of Culture 2017.
Having moved away from Yorkshire in 2019, Siana-Mae is very excited to be back with the lovely people of the North. She is extremely passionate about increasing the diversity of audiences for the sector and cannot wait to get involved with the communities of Leeds!
When not at work, she can usually be found either hanging out in a cultural space, with her cats in the garden or quietly crocheting something garish.
Kate is a freelance Artist and Producer based in Manchester, with a background in Contemporary Performance and Art & Design. She works regularly with Quarantine on a variety of projects as part of their continuing body of work.
Kate is excited to be working with Transform on this year’s festival and be back in her home county.
Hannah is an experienced arts marketing and communications professional based in Leeds, having previously worked on exhibitions, events and participation programmes across a range of visual arts organisations including The Tetley, South London Gallery and Pump House Gallery. With an audience focused approach that spans the full range and breadth of marketing channels, Hannah is passionate about delivering meaningful and accessible communications.
Jane is the Producer for Yorkshire Sculpture International (YSI), a unique partnership between Henry Moore Institute, Leeds Art Gallery, The Hepworth Wakefield and Yorkshire Sculpture Park – working together to celebrate Yorkshire as the home of sculpture in the UK. She curated the international sculpture commissions in the public realm for YSI’s festival in 2019 and is producing the commissions for the summer 2021 programme featuring artists Akeelah Bertram, Claye Bowler, Nwando Ebizie, Ashley Holmes, Shezad Dawood and Ariel René Jackson. Since moving to Leeds in 2010 she has curated a major Joseph Beuys exhibition at Leeds Art Gallery, was previously director of S1 Artspace, Sheffield and sculpture curator for the Arts Council Collection. Between 2004 and 2010 she was Relationship Manager for Visual Arts at Arts Council England based in Cambridge. Jane began her career in London in the mid-1990s at Matt’s Gallery and Anthony Reynolds Gallery, and studied on the international Curatorial Programme at De Appel in Amsterdam.
Ben is Professor of Cultural Engagement in the School of Performance and Cultural Industries at the University of Leeds and Director of the national Centre for Cultural Value. Prior to his academic career, he worked as an arts manager for ten years, most recently as a Producer at the National Theatre of Scotland. Since 2014 Ben has been the Academic Director of the Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy Programme, which is now one of Arts Council England’s National Portfolio Organisations. Ben is the Co-Editor of Arts and the Market and has published widely on arts marketing, arts management, cultural policy and cultural value. His monograph Audience Engagement in the Performing Arts: A critical analysis was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2019. Ben is currently the Independent Chair of Flux, Rotherham’s Creative People and Places programme and Vice-Chair of Transform theatre festival in Leeds. He is currently leading a national research project investigating the impacts of Covid-19 on the UK’s cultural sector and the implications for policy.
Trained as a Theatre Director, Rach has had a varied career across culture, from founding her own youth theatre and working as a festival manager and Exec Director, to collaborating with communities in museums and creating exhibitions with internationally renowned artists. Rach has fundraised over 1 million pounds for arts projects across her career, in addition to leading teams and managing complex, large-scale events and festivals. Co-Founder and Co-Director of producing charity, ARCADE, Rach works with communities and artists to make brilliant things happen in Bridlington and Scarborough. Previously Exec Director of York Mediale, Rach set up and managed the company, leading a team of 15 and coordinating a 10-day, citywide festival in 2018.
Nick Dyson is a Partner at Blacks Solicitors and heads up both the Commercial Property team and specialist Holiday & Home Parks team. Nick joined Blacks in 2002 from an internationally recognised ‘Leeds Big Six’ firm, and is known for bringing a pragmatic and personal touch to working with clients. Since taking his position as a Partner at Blacks, the Commercial Property team has more than quadrupled in size. He advises property investors, developers and occupiers as well as funders on acquiring, developing, selling, letting and charging property. He has built up strong relationships with some of the key regional property professionals and is a well-known and respected name in the Leeds legal market for practical, commercial legal advice. Outside of professional life, Nick has been active in supporting community organisations and as such, has been a board member at Sinai Synagogue, Leeds (2018-2021) and East Street Arts (2016-2021) and recently became a member at Leeds Community Foundation
Nadine has worked in the arts sector for over 26 years supporting artists and arts organisations to develop and strengthen their opportunities and growth. As a creative consultant she draws upon her wide-ranging knowledge of contemporary arts practices and networks to provide specialist advice, as well as participating directly in project design, implementation, research, and evaluation. She brings a wealth of experience and expertise working with international cultural organisations and is adept at working on transnational partnerships and programmes. She has extensive transnational experience and can activate a wide network of contacts, both in institutional and grassroots organisations across Europe, Latin America and Africa. Nadine also works regularly for a range of UK higher education creative institutions such as the Royal College of Art, University of the Arts London, Glasgow School of Art, Royal Northern College of Music and Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama. As a policy researcher she supports these institutions through evidenced-based policy analysis and advocacy, highlighting the contributions they make to the economy as well as the UK’s cultural prosperity and social wellbeing.
Toni-Dee is an independent artist based in Manchester. Occasionally she is a writer, workshop leader, collaborator, and ‘thinker-in-the room’. Her current body of work, made with ‘infectious warmth’ (Exeunt) is a series of performances & installations made for cemeteries, refugee centres, kitchens, churches and theatres. Since 2015 she has been commissioned by Fuel Theatre for The New Theatre In Your Neighbourhood project, been a contributing story group writer for climate justice project Hello X, created performance as public intervention, and presented works in SICK Festival, Queer Migrant Takeover, Queerly Departed and Works Ahead. Currently, Toni is working on ‘Doze’ a project exploring rest as resistance. She is Associate Artist and Access Assistant for award winning artist lead company Selina Thompson Ltd, and makes intricate, intimate, and wildly entertaining live events for children and families as an associate of One Tenth Human. Toni is a Trustee of Leeds based international performance festival Transform.