The Almeida Board

Luke Johnson (Chair) 
Luke has been Chairman of theatre charity Stage One since 2010.  He is co-owner of Assembly Festival, one of the largest venue complexes on the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. He is chairman of Fiery Dragons, a backer of commercial theatre, in partnership with producer Edward Snape. He is also a non-executive director of AKA, the leading marketing services provider to the theatre industry. For six years until 2010 he served as Chairman of Channel 4 Television and is a former Chairman of the Royal Society of Arts and governor of The University of the Arts London. He is Chairman of Risk Capital Partners, a private equity firm he co-founded in 2001, the Institute of Cancer Research and Gaucho Restaurants. He is Chairman and part owner of Patisserie Holdings PLC, Gail’s bakeries, Neilson Active Holidays and The Brighton Pier Group plc and is also a director of Brompton Bicycles. He writes a weekly essay in The Sunday Times and until 2015 wrote a weekly column in The Financial Times. He has lived in London for over 30 years.

Axel Burrough
An architect who has specialised in the design of theatres and buildings for the arts. Now an independent consultant, he was a director of the Islington-based architects Levitt Bernstein for 38 years. He served on the board of the Theatres Trust for six years and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. He has acted as an independent assessor for Arts Council England and the Scottish Arts Council and is an Islington resident.

John Cassy
John is the co-founder of Factory 42, a Somerset House based production company with a BAFTA winning creative team working across television and immersive content. Upcoming projects include Hold The World, a ground breaking interactive virtual reality experience with Sir David Attenborough set in the Natural History Museum. John previously worked in senior roles at Sky for 10 years, including creating and running the Sky Arts channels as well as working across genres from sports to factual to music.   He is a former Guardian journalist and currently a board Governor of the International Advanced Imaging Society in LA and a mentor with the charity UpRising.

Jonathan Church CBE
Jonathan was Artistic Director of Chichester Festival Theatre from 2006-2016.
Previous posts include: Artistic Director of Sydney Theatre Company (2016), Artistic Director of Birmingham Repertory Theatre (2001-2006), Associate Director of Hampstead Theatre (1999-2001). Artistic Director of Salisbury Playhouse (1995-1999), Associate Director of Derby Playhouse (1994-1995) and Assistant Director of Nottingham Playhouse (1992-1993).
Jonathan is currently the Artistic Director of the Bath Theatre Royal Summer Season and the director of Jonathan Church Productions -a company formed in 2015 in association with Delfont Mackintosh Theatres to produce high quality theatre in the West End, on tour and internationally. 

Carrie Cracknell*
Carrie is a director. She was Artistic Director of the Gate Theatre, London, from 2007 to 2012. She has also previously been Associate Director both at the Young Vic and the Royal Court. Her directing credits include Oil for the Almeida; The Deep Blue Sea; Medea; Blurred Lines (National Theatre); Macbeth; Electra (Young Vic); Birdland; Pigeons; Searched (Royal Court); Wozzeck (ENO); The Sexual Neurosis of Our Parents; Hedda (Gate Theatre); I Am Falling (Gate Theatre / Sadlers Wells). 

Manisha Ferdinand*
Manisha Ferdinand has worked in arts, culture and entertainment PR for over a decade, currently as Head of PR for Amazon Entertainment UK. Prior to this, she was head of PR for Sky Arts, Sky Movies and Sky 3D.

ichard Gildea
Richard is the Managing Director and Senior Credit Officer for the EMEA Region for JP Morgan in London. He has been with the bank since 1986 working in New York and since 1993 in London. He has an extensive background in corporate restructuring, capital markets activity and has worked in a number of client-focused roles. He chaired the Corporate Council for the Almeida Theatre from 2009 to 2012 and is a member of the Advisory Council of SAIS-Johns Hopkins in Washington, D.C.

Sian Hansen
Sian has had a varied career in international finance, global public policy discourse and communications and is currently a Senior Advisor for Oxford Investment Consultants. From 2013 to 2016, Sian was Executive Director of the Legatum Institute, a global public policy think tank dedicated to promoting prosperity. Previously she spent seven years as Managing Director of the think tank Policy Exchange, an educational charity promoting research and discourse on public policy in the UK. Sian is currently a Non-executive Director of JP Morgan Multi-Asset Trust PLC and a Non-executive Director of Pacific Asset Trust. In addition she is on the Advisory Board of Onward (a UK think tank), Cerno Capital, DPI Mining USA and EBF International (Shanghai) Ltd. Formerly, Sian was Director and Co-Head of Sales for Asian Equities at Societe Generale and before this was an equity analyst with Enskilda Securities.

Dorothy Henderson*
Dorothy was a partner in city law firm Travers Smith, where she was Head of Employment Law, a department she set up in 1992. Since retiring from private practice in 2010, Dorothy works as a part-time Judge in the Employment and also the Immigration & Asylum Tribunals, both based in Central London. She is an Honorary Associate of her old college, Newnham, Cambridge, was on the College’s Fundraising Board and was Chair of Governors at St Alban’s High School for Girls from 2013-2017, where she remains on the Governing Body. In 2013, she obtained an MA in Shakespeare and Contemporary Performance from Birkbeck College. Dorothy also works with Rare Recruitment, a specialist graduate diversity recruiter, assisting candidates from BAME groups and disadvantaged backgrounds with job applications for law firms in the City. Dorothy was appointed a Trustee of the Almeida in September 2018. Her hobbies include (unsurprisingly) the theatre and also learning the piano.

Tanya Seghatchian 
Tanya is a Bafta award winning film producer who straddles both the commercial mainstream and indie cinema. She was one of the producer’s of the first four films in the Harry Potter franchise and of Pawel Pawlikowski’s acclaimed My Summer of Love. She is also the former head of the Development and Film Funds at the British Film Institute (BFI) and the UK Film Council (UKFC), where she championed British films, investing in independent breakouts such as The King's Speech, The Iron Lady, The Woman In Black, alongside several Cannes/Venice competition/selection titles including Jane Campion's Bright Star, Lynne Ramsay’s We Need to Talk About Kevin, Steve McQueen’s Shame, and Jonathan Glazer’s Under The Skin. More recently she has been working on the Netflix television series The Crown, as Executive Producer alongside Oscar nominated screenwriter Peter Morgan and director Stephen Daldry.

*Members of the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee