King’s Head Theatre Appoints Thomas Ryalls as new Executive Director and Sofi Berenger as new Producer.
Following the departure of Executive Director, Fiona English from the King’s Head Theatre later this month, the theatre is delighted to welcome Thomas Ryalls as new Executive Director and Sofi Berenger as the venue’s Producer who take up their positions full time in early 2022.
Former Executive Director, Fiona English, was with the theatre for five years. During this time she helped raise more than £2m and saw hundreds of productions take place. Fiona guided the venue through the COVID crisis, implementing an effective business plan and ensuring there were no staff redundancies. Now Thomas Ryalls and Sofi Berenger will join newly appointed Co-Artistic Directors Mark Ravenhill and Hannah Price as the King’s Head prepares to make its historic move to a new venue within Islington Square.
Hannah Price and Mark Ravenhill Co-Artistic Directors on the new appointments: “We are delighted that Tom Ryalls is joining us. After the extraordinary leadership the King’s Head has enjoyed throughout the pandemic under Fiona English, we knew we needed someone strong, innovative and visionary to help lead us through the next challenging steps, both as the theatre industry navigates the next wave of covid restrictions and as the King’s Head makes the exciting move into our new building.”
“The King’s Head Theatre has always been a place that has attracted extraordinary talent and we are delighted to continue that tradition with the appointment of Sofi Berenger. As we work towards the 2022 move into the new building we knew we needed a bold, brave and inspiring producer who will help us champion extraordinary new voices. Sofi is that producer.”
“We are so excited to work towards the opening of the new building with this exciting and dynamic team. As the theatre world faces challenge after challenge, we want to support and champion new exciting voices making bold brilliant LGBTQIA+ theatre. This is just the team to do that, leading us into an exciting new future for the Kings Head.”
Tom Ryalls joins the King’s Head from Stockroom as the Head of Development, previous to this, they have worked across the subsidised sector and with ATG in the West End. Tom is one of the Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy Fellows from 2020, an alumnus of StageOne and part of the SSE Creative Leadership programme. They are a trustee of Unlimited and Upstart Theatre and also a member of the London Area Council of Arts Council England. They have produced and written shows in theatres across the country including Theatre503, Theatre Royal Stratford East and Cast and have funded and organised community commissioning programmes across London.
Tom explains: "It's an exciting time for the organisation as Mark and Hannah take over artistic leadership and we look to move the theatre to a new building, I'm thrilled to work with them to develop on the reputation of The King's Head and lead a truly inclusive, accessible, theatre and LGBTQIA+ venue. We need to think imaginatively about the structures at the heart of our theatres. I'm coming from a place where we put six writers on salary in the middle of a pandemic, and I hope I can bring some of that ambition and care for artists and teams to the King’s Head."
Sofi Berenger joins the King’s Head from VAULT Creative Arts as Producer and General Manager, previous to this she was the general manager for Olivier-award nominated Les Enfants Terribles and Producer of London’s Free Open Air Theatre Season at The Scoop. Sofi is also the chairwoman for Iris Theatre based in Covent Garden. As an independent producer, Sofi works predominantly with first-time playwrights through her company Metal Rabbit Productions, producing work with venues such as Soho Theatre, Park Theatre, Arcola Theatre, Southwark Playhouse, Theatre503, St James’ and Arts Theatre. She won an Off West End award in 2017 and is a Stage One bursary recipient.
Sofi says: “I am absolutely delighted to be joining the King’s Head Theatre team as their new producer, working alongside Mark, Hannah and Tom. It's such an exciting time for the organisation, full of opportunity coming out of the pandemic and moving into our brand new theatre space in 2022 and I can’t wait to join the team. The Kings Head Theatre has such a rich history of championing the very best new voices. I look forward to building on this legacy, rebuilding a vibrant artistic community for extraordinary work to flourish in innovative, exciting and crucially sustainable ways..”