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We are seeking to appoint a part-time Chief Executive for a maternity cover position. The role will commence in February, with a 4-week handover period with the current Chief Executive, before a 9-month contract commences from mid-March.

Anno credit Hugh Carswell
(Anno: credit Hugh Carswell)

In an unprecedented year for the world and the arts sector, Scottish Ensemble has successfully maximised its flexible and innovative model, responding to the new urgent needs of its audiences. Adapting its work for the digital sphere (as it looks to find a bold new filmic language for classical music), developing its programmes in Music & Mental Health, and continuing to connect its artistic plans with relevant contemporary issues, the group has stayed resilient and ambitious through this unpredictable period. Regular Funding support from Creative Scotland and a successful 50th anniversary fundraising campaign which culminated earlier in 2020 has also increased stability.

The Chief Executive (Maternity Cover) will be responsible for ensuring SE continues to hold a reputation as a leader in innovation within classical music, creating powerful performances that challenge perceptions and galvanize new audiences. You will be adept at all areas of senior leadership, and confident in strategic planning, governance, managing budgets, HR, developing artistic partnerships and productions, fundraising and brand/marketing.

You will lead a brilliant small team in the final planning and delivery of the 21-22 season, which will feature cross-artform and cross-genre collaborations; further expansion of SE’s popular Concerts by Candlelight series; increased work in music and mental health; and a busy programme to improve young people’s well-being through music. You will also plan and lead on international touring projects in multiple continents.

SE’s current Chief Executive will offer some support and guidance during her leave and internal development/restructures will see some responsibilities passed to other team members, but you will represent and lead the organisation during the contracted period.

The successful candidate will have strong experience in a senior management / leadership position within an arts environment, preferably the performing arts, as well as a demonstrable passion for and knowledge of classical music and the wider arts sector. Given the nature of the maternity cover, we are looking for someone who can ‘hit the ground running’ and so a detailed understanding of the usual cycles of a classical music organisation, as well as confident team leadership skills will be advantageous. You should also be passionate about new ways of working and about driving positive change in the classical music sector.

Application process: Please email your current CV and a covering letter (max. 2 x A4 pages) to samantha.barber@scottishensemble.co.uk

Scottish Ensemble is an Equal Opportunities employer and are committed to building a diverse workforce. We will consider condensed hours, working from home, or other structures to accommodate a range of personal circumstances, and encourage applications from individuals who share characteristics which are underrepresented in the classical music sector.

We would be grateful if all candidates could please also complete our Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form via this link. This information will be stored securely and separately to applications and is anonymised.


Deadline for applications: Tuesday 15 December

Interviews: Friday 18 December (via Zoom or equivalent)

Salary: £40,000 FTE per annum (pro rata will be applied)

Start date, working hours and period: From Monday 15 February, we would like the incoming candidate to be available for 1-1.5 days per week for an extended handover. From Monday 15 March, 3-4 days per week, for a period of 9 months (ie. until January 2022).