Leeds Grand Theatre announce the appointment of Maria Spadafora as Creative Engagement Manager

Leeds Grand Theatre & Opera House Ltd is proud to announce the appointment of Maria Spadafora as Creative Engagement Manager; the role will form a significant part of the Learning Management Team.

Committed to increasing access to the arts through the much-loved historic theatres and cinema (Leeds Grand Theatre, City Varieties Music Hall and Hyde Park Picture House), Spadafora will lead on the development and delivery of a new creative engagement strategy across all three venues.

The programme will incorporate the Company’s Youth Theatre and Leeds Actors in Training (LAIT) provision, Summer Festival and year-round creative engagement activities (specialising in young peoples’ work), as well as creating new opportunities to introduce diverse participants to a range of creative activities.

Moving from Education & Participation Coordinator at Freedom Studios, Bradford, Maria brings with her a wealth of experience from more than 20-years’ working in educational roles within the Arts and third-sector organisations. Previous roles include Community Engagement Officer at South Asian Arts (SAA-UK) and Arts Outreach Officer at Square Chapel Arts Centre.

Speaking about her new role, Maria said: “I’m thrilled to have joined the Learning Team at Leeds Grand Theatre & Opera House Ltd. These gorgeous, historic venues offer a unique space and environment in which young people can explore the multi-facets of the Arts, whilst making friends.

“My aim is to engage with a wider audience and reach out to local people through shared ideas and new opportunities. I believe that the Arts should be inclusive; everyone has the right to access and benefit from the Arts as a tool for expression, exploration and empowerment.”

Rachel Lythe, Head of Learning, said: “With an established and thriving Youth Theatre and Summer Festival, we’re delighted to welcome Maria to the team to lead on our creative out-of-schools programme, to inspire more young people through our fantastic buildings and the arts.”