Mark Carruthers has announced his retirement as Chairman of the Lyric Theatre. A passionate advocate of theatre and the arts in Northern Ireland, Mark has been closely associated with the Lyric for many years and played a crucial leadership role in overseeing the construction and opening of the new theatre in 2011.
Mark said, “After almost fourteen years on the Lyric Board – eight of them as Chairman – the time has come to pass the baton on. The Lyric has achieved a great deal in recent years – a new theatre that can stand tall alongside the best in these islands and a renewed commitment to staging quality, innovative and relevant theatre – and I am proud to have played a part in the Lyric team that made that happen. The Lyric enjoys a very special place in our cultural landscape and I look forward to watching it grow and prosper in the years to come.”
Vice-Chair Sid McDowell commented, “On behalf of the Lyric Board I would like to thank Mark for the inspirational leadership he has provided over the past eight years. He leaves the world of drama in Northern Ireland in a very much better place through the contribution he has made since joining the Lyric Theatre Board some 14 years ago.”
Executive Producer Jimmy Fay added, “It has been a privilege to work with Mark over the past ten months, and witness at close quarters his absolute dedication and commitment to making the Lyric such a beautiful and dynamic theatre. His knowledge of the arts scene and his great common sense have been a valuable source of guidance and inspiration, and his achievement of developing the Lyric into one of the leading cultural institutions on the island of Ireland cannot be overestimated. I appreciate how much the theatre means to Mark and I know he will continue to be supportive of the Lyric's work. Mark has stepped down from the Lyric Board but he isn’t stepping away from the wider family of Lyric supporters.”
Roisin McDonough, Chief Executive of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, commented: “Throughout his time with the Lyric Theatre Mark Carruthers has served as a dedicated and passionate Board member and Chairman. I would like to take this opportunity to thank him for his significant contribution over that time, for overseeing the development and build of the new theatre, and many successful programme seasons. Throughout his time of service, his desire to make the theatre the very best that it can be has always been at the fore, helping to affirm the Lyric’s position as a leading light of the local arts scene.”
Sid McDowell has taken on the responsibilities of Acting Chair, and Mark’s successor will be announced shortly in accordance with the rules of the charity.