Jonathan Holloway’s first year at the artistic helm of the Perth Festival delivered on a promise to be an explosion of energy, filling venues from concert halls and theatres to disused buildings and parks, with more than 2,200 performances presented to 800,000 people.
The 2012 Perth Festival engaged audiences from the very young at Atishoo and Home Sweet Home and witnessed childlike glee on the faces of more mature audiences after Oráculos and RedBall Project. And absolutely everybody who saw the Lotterywest Festival Celebration Place des Anges will always remember this unique Festival experience. They were delighted by the energy and focus created in our beautiful Festival Gardens and set attendance records at the Perth Writers Festival.
Jonathan sees the Perth Festival as the place where international and local companies alike create their best work, often together. Music legend Ennio Morricone conducted the WA Youth Orchestra in a magical night of the Maestro’s music. I Fagiolini (UK) and St George’s Cathedral Consort Choir made beautiful music together in Striggio and Tallis: Music in 40 Parts. The Festival brought events of active participation such as Home Sweet Home and one-on-one theatre success Oráculos, where each audience member made the show with the talented performers from Teatro de los Sentidos and the four local artists chosen to perform with them. Two of Korea’s brightest artists Choi Jeong Hwa and U-Ram Choe broke attendance records in the Visual Arts and Perth saw triumphant world premiere seasons of Driving Into Walls and Elektra.
Jonathan came to Perth from the UK where he spent the last six years as Artistic Director and Chief Executive of the Norfolk & Norwich Festival in the UK. During his time audiences increased from 35,000 to 330,000, turnover increased by over 600% and ticket sales tripled. It became the fourth largest city arts festival in the UK through a program expanded to embrace site-specific work, large-scale outdoor events, circus, a children's festival, physical and visual theatre and the visual arts. The festival embraced creative learning, delivering Creative Partnerships for the region, working intensively with over 15,000 young people year round.
In July 2003 Jonathan was Creative Director of Elemental, a large-scale theatre, music and spectacle event at Chalon-sur-Saone festival in France.
From 1997-2004 Jonathan set up and ran the National Theatre's events department on London's South Bank. He was the founding artistic director of Watch this Space (the National's acclaimed annual festival of international outdoor theatre, music and spectacle), the Festival of Lights (a biennial festival exploring light and fire festivals from around the world) and co-wrote/directed Robin Hood in the National's Loft Theatre. Prior to this he was Resident Theatre Director of the Wilde Theatre in Bracknell (directing under the name Jack Holloway).
Jonathan started his programming career whilst at University, promoting and presenting bands and artists including The Sugarcubes, Thom Yorke (pre-Radiohead), Siouxsie and The Creatures, Transvision Vamp and The Inspiral Carpets.
He has been Chair of Total Theatre Network (the national development agency for physical and visual theatre), on the Executive of the British Arts Festivals Association and is a fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts.