Galway 2020 creative director resigns ‘by mutual agreement’

Galway Daily news Galway 2020 appoints new Creative Director after eight month vacancy

Galway 2020 creative director Chris Baldwin has left the organisation, according to a statement released Wednesday.

Citing ‘personnel changes’, the group noted the planning of its programme’s implementation phase would still go ahead as expected.

Chris Baldwin – a British performance director, curator, and writer – was appointed to develop the programme of events for Galway 2020 in July last year.

He was curator of Interdisciplinary Performance for Wroclaw, European Capital of Culture 2016 in Poland and has over 20 years’ experience producing international cultural projects and festivals all over the EU.

However, the Irish Times reported that he “has been on sick leave for some weeks”.

Galway City councillor and former mayor Padraig Conneely expressed serious concerns in the project’s future.

But the City’s chief executive Brendan McGrath – who sits on the Galway 2020 board – was quoted as saying he had “complete confidence” in Galway 2020.

According to the organisation’s statement, “Following these changes the Board of Galway 2020 has reviewed the composition of the cultural leadership required to deliver an exciting and innovative world class programme and will make an announcement on this in the coming weeks.”

In other words, Galwegians can expect an announcement on Baldwin’s replacement – new ‘cultural leadership’ for the programme – in the near future.

Galway 2020 also went on to announce the appointment of three new producers: Liz Kelly with the “Small Towns Big Ideas” project, Kate Howard as Visual Arts Curator, and Craig Flaherty as Audience Development and Programme producer.

A few events have already kicked off, such as the “Small Town Big Ideas” community funding project, the “Wires Crossed” tightwire walking workshops, and the “Symphonic Waves” youth ensemble orchestra.

The full Galway 2020 events programme will be published later this year.