Jude Kelly CBE

Jude Kelly CBE Add to Favourites

Artistic Director, South Bank Centre

To book Jude Kelly CBE please contact your JLA Agent.


Alongside her role in the London Olympics, Jude is Artistic Director of the South Bank Centre. She made her reputation attracting huge new audiences to the West Yorkshire Playhouse, then launched regional arts labs to encourage and develop creative ‘hunches’ without feeling the pressure to create product within a fixed timescale. Jude argues that we should celebrate the exceptional, champion fresh partnerships and plan more for cultural change.


Jude Kelly is Artistic Director of the South Bank Centre and former Chair of Culture and Education for London 2012.

Jude is an award-winning theatre director. After founding Battersea Arts Centre she joined the RSC, then took over the helm at the West Yorkshire Playhouse. As both Artistic Director and CEO of the country's largest regional theatre, she established a popular ‘centre of excellence’.

Amongst her many successes at Leeds, Jude’s production of Singin’ in the Rain transferred to the Royal National Theatre and won an Olivier for Outstanding Musical Production. She also directed Ian McKellen in The Seagull, Patrick Stewart in Johnson over Jordon and Dawn French in When We Are Married.

Jude left Yorkshire to found METAL, an artistic ‘laboratory’. It provides a platform for collaborations between art forms and strategic projects which affect the built environment, people and communities.

Jude represents Britain on cultural matters at UNESCO. She has also jointly chaired the Curricula Advisory Committee on Arts and Creativity, with Lord Puttnam.

Jude Kelly is a dynamic and inspirational speaker. Drawing from her creative and leadership roles, she tackles complex issues with a combination of wit and wisdom.

© Copyright 2021 JLA. All rights reserved.