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Leadership restructure at Clean Break will ‘expand groundbreaking work’

Roisin McBrinn and Anna Herrmann. Photos: Ste Murphy and Tracey Anderson Roisin McBrinn and Anna Herrmann. Photos: Ste Murphy and Tracey Anderson
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Women’s theatre company Clean Break is restructuring its leadership in a bid to align its artistic and education programmes more closely.

The company, which specialises in making work with women who have experience of the criminal justice system, has made the announcement ahead of its 40th birthday next year.

The move will see head of artistic programme Roisin McBrinn and head of education Anna Herrmann become joint artistic directors.

Together, they will combine their experiences as a theatre director and practitioner specialising in social change to “expand the ways in which Clean Break produces groundbreaking new work”.

Lucy Perman, the company’s chief executive, will leave in the summer after 21 years.

Clean Break has therefore launched a search for a female executive director to complete the new leadership team.

The company was founded in 1979 by two women who had left prison and has since developed a theatre-based education and training programme for women with lived experience of the criminal justice system.

Plans for the future include integrating this education programme more fully into the creation of new work.

Clean Break chair Kim Evans said the company wanted to be “more ambitious, more open and more visible” as it moves into its fifth decade.

“We want to recommit to the principles of our two founders. They wanted to go out and use theatre to tell those hidden stories by bringing the women that we work with closer to the heart of the company. We are going to try and do that by having joint artistic directors, who each have different backgrounds,” she said.

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