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New appointments to the Board of Creative Scotland

Published: 18 Mar 2021

Headshots of the four new board members

From left to right: Malath Abbas, Yahya Barry, Duncan Hendry, Carol Main.

The Cabinet Secretary, Fiona Hyslop today announced the appointment of Malath Abbas, Yahya Barry, Duncan Hendry and Carol Main, as Members of the Board of Creative Scotland.

Speaking of the appointments, Robert Wilson, Chair of Creative Scotland said:

“I am delighted to welcome the appointment to our Board of Carol, Duncan, Malath, and Yahya, who bring with them an impressive range of experience from across the art and creative sectors, as well as a breadth of different perspectives. They will be a valuable addition to our existing Board over the coming years as we embrace a period of recovery and renewal, post-pandemic.”

The new Board Members are:

Malath Abbas is a game designer, artist and creative producer working on experimental and meaningful games and experiences in Scotland. Malath is a founding member of Biome Collective, a creative studio, community and digital space for people to create, collaborate and explore new frontiers in game design, digital art and technology. With over 10 years working in Scotland, Malath has created a diverse portfolio of work and has exhibited internationally. With a passion for the arts, he has a track record of cross-disciplinary collaborative projects with sectors outside of games. Through close collaboration, partnership and workshop facilitation Malath has worked to demystify digital and games to diverse groups and settings. Past projects include ‘Shpeel’ an interactive installation that explores mental health, BAFTA Scotland nominated game ‘Killbox’ and ‘Arcadia Festival’ that brings people together and empowers marginalised voices to explore, share and celebrate games design, experimental process and our evolving cultural landscape.

Yahya Barry is Chair of BE United, an African/Caribbean arts and cultural charity. Drawing on his expertise in ethnic relations, cultural dialogue and social change, he has provided consultation to the BBC Religion & Ethics Board from 2016 and regularly contributes to BBC Scotland’s Sunday Morning With programme. Yahya is currently a senior visiting researcher at the University of Copenhagen’s Centre of African Studies, former fellow at the University of Edinburgh’s Alwaleed Centre and Lead Outreach and PR at Edinburgh Central Mosque and Islamic Cultural Centre. He hopes to bring his expertise in inclusive approaches to creativity and culture in direct partnership with, and in support of, a diverse range of communities in Scotland to Creative Scotland.

Duncan Hendry has worked in the cultural sector in Scotland for over thirty years and brings experience of the music business and the wider performing arts as a concert promoter, festival director and programmer of some of Scotland’s largest theatres and arts venues. From 1999 until 2019 he led major arts organisations in Aberdeen and Edinburgh. Duncan helped establish and became the first Chief Executive of Aberdeen Performing Arts in 2004 and then in 2012 became Chief Executive of Festival City Theatres Trust which later became Capital Theatres. He stepped down from this role in 2019. He is a former member and Chair of Edinburgh Cultural Venues Group, a former Trustee of the Lemon Tree and is currently Chair of Lung Ha Theatre Company, a board member of both Eden Court Theatre in Inverness and Edinburgh International Jazz and Blues Festival, and a member of the King’s Theatre Campaign Board.

Carol Main is Director of Live Music Now Scotland and LMN International, a scheme which supports exceptionally talented emerging artists in bringing the transformative power of music to a wide range of audiences throughout our communities. She also works as a freelance journalist, including as classical music editor of The List magazine. She is a Governor of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, with special responsibility for health, safety and wellbeing, Chair of The Night With..., Vice-Chair of the Traditional Music Forum and a board member of the European Federation of National Youth Orchestras. Carol has also served on the boards of the Association of British Orchestras, Voluntary Arts Scotland and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, of which she was a director for almost 20 years. She was awarded an MBE for services to music in 2015.

More details on the appointments process are available on the Scottish Government website.