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BOA Group appoints Graham Sheffield CBE as Chair

Birmingham’s BOA Group, famed for its flagship performing arts academy in the city, appoints Graham Sheffield CBE as Chair of the Board. Sheffield took up his new role at the start of November 2023 following a national recruitment process.

Working alongside BOA Group Chief Executive, Kate Tague, Graham will help to set the vision and shape the strategy of the Group, which delivers secondary and further education pathways in the creative, digital and performing arts sectors in Birmingham.

After a successful career in senior positions across the global arts world, Graham is joining the BOA Group to support their work to inspire emerging talent across the Midlands. His impressive resume includes Director of Arts for the British Council, Artistic Director at the Barbican Centre and Music Projects Director at London’s South Bank Centre, as well as twelve years as a Radio Producer on BBC Radio 3. Graham was awarded a CBE in 2010 for services to the Arts and most recently has completed eight years as Chair of the charity Help Musicians.

Supported by the Ormiston Trust and Birmingham City University, the BOA Group operates three educational settings and the Old Rep Theatre, offering exciting and unique educational pathways for learners with interests in performing arts, creative and digital technologies.

Commenting on his appointment, Sheffield said: “I am honoured and delighted to join the BOA Group as Chair of the Board. BOA Group offers a compelling opportunity for young people and aspiring arts talent from across the region to train and perform in industry standard facilities.

“With more and more investment into TV, film, music and theatre in Birmingham, plus the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire on our doorstep, it will be inspiring to be a part of the arts community at BOA Group and across the city.”

Welcoming Graham to his new role, BOA Group Chief Executive, Kate Tague, said: “Here at the BOA Group, we aim to inspire our students to ‘Imagine Everything’ and ensure they leave us with the qualifications, technical knowledge and employability skills they require for the next stage of their lives.

“Graham brings with him a wealth of experience within the performing arts sector and shares our vision to inspire emerging talent across our region. We are delighted that Graham is joining us at an exciting time for the BOA Group as we go from strength to strength and expand our bespoke educational offering.”

About Graham Sheffield CBE, Chair of the Board

  • Graham Sheffield CBE is an Associate director of FEI Consultants. Until July 2018 he was Director Arts for the British Council, and previously Artistic Director of the Barbican Centre in London from 1995-2010. Graham was also Music Projects Director at London's South Bank Centre and stepped down from the charity Help Musicians after 8 years as Chair.

  • Graham was recognised with a CBE for services to the Arts in 2010, a lifetime achievement award in 2015 from ISPA, and a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government. He is a Doctor of Arts at City University, London. Sheffield remains an active musician, as well as a writer and speaker on arts issues in the UK and internationally. He lives in Worcester.


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