Final curtain call for Playhouse boss Vince

Vince Hope Theatre manager at Alnwick Playhouse. .
Vince Hope Theatre manager at Alnwick Playhouse. .
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A THEATRE boss has taken his curtain call and is moving on to tread new boards after a successful four years.

Vince Hope has decided to leave Alnwick Playhouse at the end of July having completed the venue’s broad and demanding arts and entertainment programme through to the period ending January 2012.

Since his arrival, he has seen the venue go from strength to strength over a period which has not been without its challenges in a difficult economic climate and uncertainties over public funding.

Under Vince’s leadership the management have been adept at making ends meet by driving up earned income and external fundraising. Season after season the venue has managed to offer a fulsome core programme of artistic performances comprising a rich and balanced mix of professional touring drama, music, dance and film of the highest quality.

Vince said: “Year 2011/12 at Alnwick Playhouse will be a year of preparation for delivery of a further three-year programme of innovative and exciting diverse artistic work in 2012-15.

“This will be in conjunction with our recent application for financial support from the Arts Council which, if accepted, will greatly benefit the venue both financially and artistically.

“However, during the last 18 months or so I have been undertaking consultancy work in the leisure and entertainment industry and I now feel the time is right for me in my career to focus on and develop that work.”

He added: “I would like to thank the trustees of the Playhouse, my loyal and hard-working staff, the Friends of the Playhouse and the general public for the support I have received throughout four most enjoyable and productive years. It has been a great privilege to have been theatre manager of the Playhouse.”

Despite being one of the lowest-funded arts venues in the UK, it has now been visited by well over one million people since opening its doors in December 1990, and has almost 2,000 paid-up Friends stretching from the Borders to south east Northumberland and beyond.

Roy Todd, the chairman of the Playhouse, said: “On behalf of the trustees I would like to thank Vince for his period of management during the last four years, in which the Playhouse has been able to thrive, prosper and develop.”

“We are extremely grateful to him and the excellent team around him for ensuring that, despite the current economic climate, the Playhouse has continued to provide a wide range of challenging and entertaining programmes. The trustees will endeavour to appoint a successor able to capitalise on the excellent inheritance Vince leaves. We wish him every success in the next stage of his career.”

The Playhouse trustees will be looking to appoint a new theatre manager to succeed Vince in early August.