ABRSM announces appointment of new Chief Executive
ABRSM, the exam board of the Royal Schools of Music, announced today that Michael Elliott, currently Chief Executive of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, will be its next Chief Executive in January 2015. Elliott succeeds Leslie East, who will retire at the end of 2014. 'I’m delighted to have been appointed as Chief Executive of ABRSM,' said Elliott. 'It’s a world-class organization and I look forward to leading it in its next phase of development.' 'We’re delighted that Michael will be joining us,' said Dame Colette Bowe, chairman of ABRSM’s Governing Body. 'He brings a wealth of leadership experience from music, education and the wider cultural scene. All of us in the ABRSM family are looking forward to working with Michael to build on ABRSM’s success as the world’s largest provider of graded music exams. 'There was huge interest in this role and a large number of people were considered. The Trustees of ABRSM, however, were impressed by the range of strengths, qualities and relevant experience that Michael will bring to this critical position.' Elliott has been Chief Executive of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra since 2011 and before that had responsibility in the senior civil service for cultural policy, including music education, when Director, Culture, at the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. From 2001 to 2008, he was Chief Executive of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and Liverpool Philharmonic Hall and acted as Associate Cultural Director for Liverpool’s year as European Capital of Culture in 2008, having led the partnership between the major cultural organizations in the City. 'The Governing Body wishes to thank Leslie very warmly indeed for his outstanding leadership of ABRSM,' added Bowe, 'and for all his long service to us, including a very successful time as Director of Publishing.'
Notes for editors
About Michael Elliott
Michael has been Chief Executive of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra since 2011 having previously, as Director, Culture, at the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, had responsibility in the senior civil service for cultural policy, including music education. From 2001 to 2008, Michael was Chief Executive of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and Liverpool Philharmonic Hall and acted as Associate Cultural Director for Liverpool’s year as European Capital of Culture in 2008 having led the partnership between the major cultural organisations in the City. Michael was born in Coventry and throughout the 1990s contributed to regional development in the Midlands as Chief Executive of the West Midlands Arts Board and then as Chief Executive of the Heart of England Tourist Board. He led the Chief Officer Groups of both the Regional Arts Boards and the Regional Tourist Boards and advised government on the first government strategy for tourism in the late 1990s. He is Chairman of the Governing Body of the University of Wolverhampton and a recipient of the honorary award of Doctor of the University from Sheffield Hallam University for his contribution to arts, culture and public service. Michael worked in higher education in his early career and has held a number of voluntary roles in education and the arts, including Chairman of the Belgrade Theatre Coventry and Deputy Chairman of the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield. He is currently a Board member of the Association of British Orchestras and of Cryptic.
About Leslie East
Leslie East has worked for ABRSM for over 16 years. He was appointed Publishing Director in 1999 and Executive Director: Syllabus & Publishing in 2007. Since February 2013, as Chief Executive, he has led a major review of ABRSM’s strategy and its infrastructure and set up a transformation programme which the new CEO will take forward. Leslie was previously Publishing Director for Novello and Company (1987–1998) and Director of Music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (1976–1987).