Heidi Vaughan has been appointed as the new artistic director and CEO of Tobacco Factory Theatres, it has been announced.
Vaughan has 20 years’ experience in theatre around the UK, Ireland and the Middle East, and comes to TFT from Bristol’s Travelling Light Theatre Company, where she is current artistic director and joint-CEO. She will succeed Mike Tweddle after six years in the role, and begins in January 2023.
The news comes only a week after TFT was generously gifted a 999 year lease by George Ferguson, and represents an exciting new chapter and a thoroughly secure foundation for the organisation as it enters its 21st year.
“I am so humbled and thrilled by this appointment and really excited by the next stage of this venue and theatre company’s journey as a place of welcome and wonder,” Vaughan reflects.
“It’s a time to connect and listen, build trust and collaborate to ensure TFT is an authentic home for creative adventures and imagination.
“It’s a precious space, housing a hugely diverse range of work in a brilliant city, which I have had a relationship with for over 25 years. It’s really only just beginning to sink in.”
Ferguson’s decision to gift the 999 year lease to the TF Arts Trust will cement his legacy as a champion of the arts, and local regeneration for the wider south Bristol community.
TFT is presenting a host of diverse theatre and comedy shows, as well as school takeovers, workshops and other opportunities to interact, over the summer and autumn.
An in-house Christmas staging of The Snow Queen has already been announced, and a major new in-house production for the autumn season will also be unveiled in the coming weeks.
TFT Chair Sarah Smith is excited by the prospect of what Vaughan will bring in 2023 and beyond. “I am absolutely delighted that Heidi will be joining Tobacco Factory Theatres,” she says.
“With her experience and passion, we believe that she is a terrific fit for our theatre.”
For news and upcoming events at Tobacco Factory and ticket links to all shows, visit www.tobaccofactorytheatres.com.
Main photo: Craig Fuller
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