Who we are
The Barn is run by a dedicated team of paid staff, supported by volunteers and voluntary board of directors. Go to the team page to find out more about all the voluntary groups and read about the staff and board below.
the Barn Office
Lorraine has an impressive 20 years of experience in the Arts and has contributed significantly to culture in Aberdeenshire, having enjoyed a successful career managing Arts and Cultural Development teams within Aberdeenshire Council and, most recently, leading a creative place-making and cultural branding initiative for the area. With professional training in the visual arts, Lorraine has served on a range of national government working groups involved in culture and the arts and has held Board positions supporting a number of cultural organisations across Scotland.
Lorraine lives on South Deeside with her partner Sunil and their children India and Ashil.
Fresh from a stint in Dubai, Ashley undertook work with The Fridge and Dubai International Film Festival. She also picked up three rescues from the region – her two cats Phil and Fern and dog, Baen. Previous experience with Peacock Visual Arts, DigiCult and STV has led Ashley to a very exciting post as Programming Manager here at the Barn. She has a passion for all things creative and cultural, in particular film, and can often be found merrily exploring the wild tracks of Scotland with husband David, and Baen.
Finance and Office Manager
Victoria has worked at the Barn since March 2014 and looks after everything to do with money and finances.
Her previous experience was mostly in the private sector and in payroll. Victoria loves working back in the charity sector and the variety of experiences that the job offers. She really enjoys the sense of community at the Barn and meeting all the people that come through the doors.
‘I have always enjoyed the arts, and working at the Barn has allowed me to experience a wide range of performances and exhibitions.’
Box Office & Admin Officer
Mel joined the team in March 2015 as operations manager. She is responsible for matters ranging from co-ordinating the activities of the various teams and volunteers and supervising Front of House and Box Office services, to overseeing logistics, commercial hires, security, health and safety, and maintenance.
Mel has over 20 years experience at management level in the leisure, catering and media / film industries and brings a combination of corporate and small business experience to her role.
An accomplished pianist and jazz singer with professional training, Mel has been involved in the Arts from a very early age. With a passion for all things creative, particularly music, Mel has always wanted to use her management and business skills in the Arts and, in her words, is ‘’delighted to be looking after the visitors, audiences, artists/performers and customers who make the Woodend Barn such a vibrant and lively place’’.
South African born Mel has called Scotland home since 2014. No stranger to performing arts venues in other corners of the world, Mel is very excited to be part of a facility that offers such a diverse range of programming to engage the community on multiple levels.
Cathy du Preez
Temporary Operations Manager
Jennifer is a freelance producer and consultant, currently working at the Barn through the Creative Scotland’s Producers’ Project initiative. Alongside Heather Fulton she is co-ordinating Woodend Barn’s new festival of work for young people, Mini Fest, and working with dance and theatre companies to help them to create and showcase new work.
Jennifer is a Regional Fellow of ISPA (International Society of Performing Arts) and is currently studying for a MA in Arts, Festivals and Cultural Management at Queen Margaret University. Her background is as a producer and programmer of dance including as Director of the DanceLive Festival and Artistic Director/General Manager of Citymoves Dance Agency. Prior to this she held roles at Aberdeen International Youth Festival, Chichester Festival Theatre and Warwick Arts Centre. Jennifer is passionate bringing exciting performance work to audiences.
Learning and Engagement officer
Digital Learning and Engagement officer
With 15 years of experience in arts marketing under her belt, Nina has joined the Barn in autumn 2016. Originally from the Netherlands, she worked as marketing manager for Peacock Visual Arts for five years after arriving in Scotland in 2005 and was also project manager for audience development agency GANE. When she is not working at the Barn, Nina runs her own interior design company Nina’s Apartment, is the singer of alt country band The Malpaso Gang and is a mum of two little boys.
Graeme joined us last year as part time caretaker.
Keeping busy in his retirement he enjoys maintaining the Barn in good order and when not working here his other main interest is helping to look after his 3 grandchildren!
Mark has masters degrees in engineering (1976) and management (1991). During the 1990s he was a director of Enterprise Oil and Shell UK. During 2001–3 he was a member of the Scottish Executive’s Cabinet Sub-Committee on Sustainable Development. From 2003–7, in collaboration with Jonathon Porritt and Forum for the Future, he helped develop and deliver Sustainability Masterclasses as part of Shell’s leadership training. Since 2007, he has worked almost full-time as a volunteer with only non-executive roles in industry. Mark helped found Woodend Arts Association in 1994 and has been Chairman since 1999.
Mark has been involved in the arts since childhood studies in cello and singing and he helped found The Speedwell Trust, a small music therapy charity, in 1985. He believes that creativity is essential for human happiness, so engagement with the arts should be available to everyone throughout their lives. Mark is a director of sound festival which he helped found in 2004, and non-executive director of Fairfield Energy Limited.
Gerry is a partner at Johnston Carmichael, chartered accountants, Aberdeen office. He has over 30 years of experience advising clients, in both the private and public sectors, including owner managed businesses and medical practices, fishing and fishing related industries; and heads up a highly competent team of specialists across a genre of finance, taxation, practice management and accounting issues. Gerry’s experience includes a spell as internal auditor of a large Aberdeen based arts organisation and his current client book includes arts and leisure organisations.
Outside of work, utilising his words; Gerry is a keen hill walker, average golfer, and poor tennis player.
Anne is a visual artist and research professor in fine art at the Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen. Her research focuses on the dynamic role that artists play in society across all art forms, working co-creatively with organisations. In 2000 she initiated and has led the On the Edge research programme at Grays School of Art, Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen working within a network of international artists on art and ecology, artistic leadership, contemporary art and remote and rural cultures, the aesthetics and ethics of working in public.
From 2008-2011 Anne has been a Senior Research Fellow at the Orpheus Research Centre in Music, Ghent, Belgium. She joined the WAL Board in May 2011.
Thomas graduated from London Contemporary Dance School with a BA (Hons) degree. In 2001, Thomas established his company Smallpetitklein and has since won many awards and commissions for his work including the prestigious Bonnie Bird New Choreography Award, the Robin Howard Foundation Commission and commissions for Project Y – Scotland’s National Youth Dance Company. He has also been short-listed for the Peter Darrell award in 2003 and The Place Prize in both 2006 & 2008. In 2013, he was short-listed for a Clore Leadership Award. Thomas was Choreographer in Residence at The Space, Dundee throughout 2008 and with Smallpetitklein he was Artist in Residence at The Byre Theatre, St Andrews from 2009 to 2013. Smallpetitklein were Dance Company in Residence at ON at Fife theatres across Fife from 2011 to 2012.
He has been mentored by The Royal Ballet’s Resident Choreographer Wayne McGregor. His work was selected to take part in the Made in Scotland showcase at the 2012 Edinburgh Festival Fringe where it enjoyed a sell out run. His work is touring to New York City, Brazil and Bangladesh in 2013. In addition to his work as a board member at Woodend Barn, he is also Chair of the Advisory Board for Performing Arts at Scottish School of Contemporary Dance at Dundee College.
Dr Sue Paterson is an oil and gas professional with over 30 years’ UK and international experience. She worked for Shell International in exploration, new business development and JV management, as well as HR. She has led teams in-country and across continents. In 2010, she set up her own oil and gas consultancy, and in 2012 became the Director of an international management consultancy. She is a qualified IOD Chartered Director, and has board experience in the oil, public and voluntary sectors. She co-authored a book called “The Fear Free Organization”, published by Kogan Page in July 2015.
Sue divides her time between Banchory and Amsterdam, where her husband Steve is currently working. Sue and Steve have two sons, Dan and Eddie.
Edward Welch graduated from the University of Oxford in Modern Languages in 1995, and received his DPhil from Oxford in 2000. Having worked at Durham University for twelve years, he joined the University of Aberdeen in 2013 as Carnegie Professor of French, where he is also Director of the George Washington Wilson Centre for Visual Culture. His research focuses on the cultural history of post-war France, exploring how literary and visual culture articulates and represents the twin dramas of modernisation and decolonisation lived through by the country. He is particularly interested in photography and its role as part of a visual economy of meaning, and is a regular contributor to Source: The Photographic Review.
He joined the WAL Board in September 2014.