• Three Choirs Festival

    BAFA: Festivals mean business

  • Ventnor Fringe Festival

    BAFA: Festivals mean business

  • Cheltenham Jazz Festival


  • Newbury Spring Festival

    BAFA: Festivals mean business

  • St Andrews Voices

    BAFA: Festivals mean business

  • Cheltenham Literature Festival

    BAFA: Festivals mean business

  • Cheltenham Science Festival

    BAFA: Festivals mean business

Roundtable speakers

BAFA Roundtable Speakers 2015

Laura Callaghan Grooms: Education Director, Deal Festival of Music and the Arts

Laura Callaghan Grooms, Director of Hand on Heart Arts, is a project manager, creative consultant, music education specialist, composer and artist. In her time as Director of HOHA, Laura has had the privilege of working on a freelance basis for a range of world-class organisations, such as the Philharmonia Orchestra, LPO, Music Education Hubs, and the Deal Festival of Music and the Arts.

Sally Christopher: Freelance Festival and Arts Professional: Producer, Project Manager and Project Coordinator

I have a variety of roles under my belt making me a well rounded and connected individual. My academic qualifications match my experience, with a Masters in Arts Management and Cultural Policy and Undergraduate Degree in English Literature and Drama. I have a particular knowledge of the festival setting, working closely on such festivals as Glastonbury Festival, Bestival, Norfolk and Norwich Festival, Big Dance, Brighton Comedy Festival, Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Melbourne International Comedy Festival. I am also passionate about large scale events, particularly Ceremonies and moments of wonder. As Production Coordinator for London 2012 Ceremonies (Props and Scenic) I worked to deliver ceremonies for the Olympic and Paralympic Games. My most recent role as Freelance Associate Producer for the Rugby World Cup Opening Ceremony 2015 allowed me to be work with the Donaldson Creative team to deliver an extraordinary event for audiences across the globe.  

louise-paley-square-354x354Louise Paley: Marketing, Outreach and Events at The Hampstead Arts Festival

Louise has been playing the piano since the age of four, and went on to study music at Oxford Brookes University achieving a first class honours in Performance and Composition. During her degree, she taught music to severely disabled children at Soundabout Music Therapy Practice, whilst managing and performing in her University funk-rock infused band.  Since graduating, Louise has helped to produce two festivals at The Roundhouse, worked as Head of Marketing at The Oxford Schubert Lieder Festival, and taught music at Ranum Efterskole in Denmark.  She has a strong love and enthusiasm for youth in music, and has recently finished directing and producing her own spoken word event for young emerging artists in London. Louise sits on the Roundhouse Youth Advisory Board (RYAB) and teaches piano in her spare time.

Kaia Parrett: Marketing and PR Coordinator, City of London Festival

Kaia studied Drama and Theatre at University and completed a Masters in Directing. She spent a year in California directing university productions, acting and designing sets. In 2012 she set up her own Theatre Company and directed performances in London. Kaia then completed a number of marketing roles in fringe theatres before becoming the Marketing & PR Manager at the City of London Festival.

Alexis Paterson: Music Festival Manager, Cheltenham Music Festival

Alexis has been with Cheltenham Festivals since 2011, working mainly on the Music Festival but also helping out with the organisation’s Jazz, Science and Literature siblings. Her graduate job was with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, working on Education projects and the contemporary music ensemble’s season. In between, she returned to university and obtained a PhD looking at new music and postmodern theory, and has taken on a range of freelance projects including typesetting, arranging, transcription, research, project management, and event management at Presteigne Festival. Eclectic gig-goer, walker, kickboxer and itinerant violin & viola player in her spare time. @leksi_p

David ReynoldsDavid Reynolds: Marketing and Box Office Assistant, Spitalfields Music

David has worked at Spitalfields Music, which presents Summer and Winter Festivals East London in June and December each year, since August 2014. The organisation also produces a year-round programme of Learning & Participation work, and it celebrates its 40th birthday in 2016. Prior to his current role David spent a year working in a communications role in the third sector. He studied Music at Durham University, and during this time volunteered at Cheltenham Music Festival and the BBC Proms.

Jennifer Robinson: Festival Coordinator, Black Filmmaker International Film Festival

With over 15 years of experience, Jennifer has honed her skills in a variety of areas including being the Festival Coordinator for the longest running black film festival, BFM. She has also been 2013’s PR for Screen Nation’s Film and Television Awards and has worked in marketing for black women’s lifestyle publication Pride Magazine. As a journalist, editor and writer she has worked for many companies and causes including being Event Manager for Lewisham Council’s recognition of Black History Month.

Amy Scott: Development Assistant, Spitalfields Music

Amy is currently the Development Assistant at Spitalfields Music - a creative music charity based in east London which produces a Winter and Summer Festival every year, and a year-round Learning & Participation programme. Before starting her current role in fundraising, Amy worked at the Wiltshire Music Centre in Bradford on Avon as a Creative Learning Intern after graduating with a music degree from the University of Chichester in 2013.

Holly Hunter: Voicelab manager, Southbank Centre

Holly is Voicelab Manager and Programmer of WHY? What’s Happening for the Young and Chorus festivals at Southbank Centre. Voicelab is a year-round singing initiative which provides opportunities for people to participate in unique performances and events in all Southbank Centre’s festivals. WHY? What’s Happening for the Young is a festival celebrating the rights of children and young people, and Chorus is festival exploring the power of singing together. Holly has worked at Southbank Centre since 2011, first as a researcher in the Development department, before moving into Learning & Participation in 2013. Holly studied Music at The University of Manchester (2006-2009), and interned at various music organisations.

Julia Tymukas: Festival Coordinator, Basingstoke Festival

Currently, Festival Coordinator of the Basingstoke Festival, a three week arts festival, which she established in 2012, it’s now in the fourth year, with over 100 events showcasing local, national and international acts. Alongside this role Julia is also Chair of Pursued by a Bear, a new writing company producing theatre and film. Her career has spanned both Australia and Britain where from 2003 she managed  one of London's leading outdoor arts companies Emergency Exit Arts and prior to that based in Adelaide, led Community Arts Network South Australia, delivering Australia wide graduate training, editing the professional journal and managing an interactive website.   She has also managed an arts centre, a touring theatre company and a theatre collective creating new work and worked as an arts publicist.