Stage One announces new Chair of the Board of Trustees

Stage One is proud to announce the appointment of Deborah Lincoln as new Chair of the Board of Trustees.

Stage One is delighted to welcome Deborah Lincoln as incoming Chair of the Board of Trustees. She takes over the leadership of Stage One’s Board from Mark Burch, who was Chair for the previous five years. Deborah comes to Stage One as a senior business executive in the media and entertainment industry, having worked for Warner Bros. and Pearson Plc, and with deep experience as a Chair and Trustee in the commercial and voluntary sector in theatre, music and arts education. Deborah also chairs the Guildhall School Trust, and was Chair of Watford Palace Theatre (2015-2022). She is a Board member of The Orwell Foundation and Political Quarterly (PQ).

Stage One supports, guides, trains and invests in emerging entrepreneurial theatre producers, providing a wide range of development programmes including industry-led new producer workshops, producer placements, bursary awards, mentoring by experienced West End producers, investment in new productions and Bridge the Gap, a one year course aimed at aspiring producers from underrepresented backgrounds.

Joseph Smith, CEO of Stage One commented:
“I’m immensely proud of what Stage One has achieved in providing opportunities to commercial producers. I would like to thank Mark Burch for the huge commitment he has shown during his time as Chair, overseeing Stage One throughout such a crucial period, and especially for his leadership in the development of our industry leading Bridge the Gap programme. I am delighted to welcome Deborah on behalf of the Board, myself and the Stage One team and look forward to working closely with her and her fellow Trustees as we continue to grow our support for and investment in the future of theatre producing.”

Deborah Lincoln – Incoming Chair, Stage One:
"As a lifelong theatre-goer, passionate about music, the arts and entertainment, I am excited to be championing Stage One as its new Chair. I look forward to supporting its extraordinary work in training, growing and investing in the next generations of talented commercial theatre producers - from all backgrounds and communities. It is an honour and a pleasure to work alongside my fellow Trustees, the excellent Stage One team and our generous partners to support the future of this vibrant and creative industry at such a pivotal time.”

Mark Burch – Outgoing Chair, Stage One:
“Stage One remains at the forefront of training the next generation of theatre producers. I am delighted to have Chaired Stage One over 5 years in which we have renewed and developed our programmes to support an exciting and diverse group of emerging producers in a period of great challenge for the theatre world.”