Georgian Theatre Royal appoints new chief executive

Jo Mawhinney.

The Georgian Theatre Royal has appointed Jo Mawhinney as its new chief executive officer and theatre manager.

Jo will take over from the current chief executive, Clare Allen, on January 2.

Jo is no stranger to the Georgian Theatre, having worked at the Richmond venue for almost 14 years.

She was initially appointed as PA to the theatre manager in 2010 and two years later was promoted to her current position of office manager.

As part of the theatre’s senior management team, she has full responsibility for the Georgian’s 100 plus volunteer workforce; manages the theatre’s Youth Theatre and takes charge of the number of weddings and events.

Jo also has long-standing experience of the production side of the theatre’s activities.

She has been production coordinator of the Theatre’s pantomimes since they were taken in-house in 2010, and has produced countless Youth Theatre shows, including performances at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

She was also producer of the inaugural show of the Butler Company – the theatre’s own professional acting troupe.

On announcing the appointment, chairman of the Georgian Theatre Royal Trust, Colin Grant said: “We owe an enormous debt of gratitude to Clare Allen for her inspirational management over the past eight years.

“We are delighted that Jo is stepping into this role. She has immeasurable knowledge of all aspects of theatre life that has been gained from many years of hands-on experience.

“We are confident that her professionalism, skills and personal qualities will be a huge asset to the ongoing development of this unique and magical venue.

“Jo has been particularly active in supporting and promoting young talent: through her management of Youth Theatre; as mentor of the Young Company during pantomime; and as a key player in developing partnerships at schools and colleges both in the UK and overseas. She is a strong advocate for young people and sees their involvement with the Theatre as an essential part of its future.

“The Georgian Theatre occupies a special place in theatrical history and over the centuries, it has inspired and entertained generations of theatregoers. In Jo’s capable hands, we are confident that it will continue to thrive, and we look forward to a successful and exciting period ahead.”

Commenting on her new appointment, Jo Mawhinney said: “It is an absolute privilege to be taking on this role.

“This is a very special venue that not only makes a massive contribution to the region’s heritage and tourism but punches well above its weight – in the heart of rural North Yorkshire – as a much-loved and well-respected performance venue.

“I am totally committed to building on the foundations that Clare Allen and previous managers have put in place to ensure that the theatre goes from strength to strength for the benefit of the local community it serves and the much wider audiences who appreciate its unique historical significance – now and in the future.”