Mark Ball has been appointed the new artistic director of the Southbank Centre.
Currently creative director at Manchester International Festival (MIF), Ball will join the multi-arts centre in January 2022 and will have overall responsibility for the artistic direction of the largest cultural centre in the UK. He will report to Elaine Bedell, CEO.
The artistic director is responsible for setting and delivering an overall artistic strategy and has a mandate to drive a broader UK-wide reach and expand the organisation’s digital offer.
Ball will be responsible for the delivery of the entire artistic programme, working with the Southbank Centre’s artistic team and extensive creative network.
In his current role as creative director at Manchester International Festival (MIF), Ball is responsible for leading the artistic programme for The Factory, the new cultural space currently being built in Manchester.
Mark Ball said: “I’m thrilled to be joining the talented and passionate team at the Southbank Centre as Artistic Director. As we emerge from the pandemic it will be our shared cultural experiences that will help us unite and create a positive and optimistic future together. I’m keen to build on the unique legacy of the Southbank Centre, which emerged from the Festival of Britain, and build a bold, inclusive and collaborative international programme that’s seared with artistic innovation and experiment and that excites the imaginations of artists and audiences across London and the UK.”
Elaine Bedell, CEO of the Southbank Centre, said: “As we enter a new era, Mark will bring a uniting vision to our mix of music, visual art, literature and performance. He has a clear and ambitious vision for the artistic future of the Southbank Centre, with excellence, digital innovation and international collaboration at its heart. Mark will join me, Misan and the rest of the team in developing an exciting new chapter for the Southbank Centre - and I can't wait to start working with him.”
Misan Harriman, chair of the Southbank Centre, added: “Mark will bring a fresh perspective on how we deliver a cultural programme that appeals to the many audiences we serve, and I’m excited at how he will also bring new energy and innovation to the remarkable artistic community we work with.
“Lockdown has shown us how many people turned to culture, both online and outside, so we’re aware of huge potential as we explore new ways to bring arts to our communities. Mark’s commitment to a wide range of voices in the arts will be invaluable as we develop a modern, post-lockdown cultural institution, and a beating heart at the centre of the capital.”