“I am a fan of physical performance in all its forms, and Upswing’s brand of circus is particularly surprising, thoughtful and contemporary. They are an ambitious company with an already impressive track record, and I hope to be a useful sounding board for them in the next phases of their growth.”
Mary Helen has 20 years of experience in arts and culture management in the US, UK and internationally. She is currently a consultant for Fourth Street, providing business planning and development services and placemaking strategies linked to culture, heritage and the creative economy. Until 2019 served as General Manager for Chisenhale Dance Space, launching a new adult dance class programme and expanding the children’s classes offer, supported by its talented membership of performance artists.
Mary Helen has experience in fundraising, including multi-partner international projects with successful multi-year funding bids to Creative Europe; working with the British Council, Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature, Music Tech Fest, and Birmingham City University. Her work with Visiting Arts and ACP Cultures+ enabled dozens of creative professionals in Africa, the Caribbean and Pacific participate in training to increase their international markets and promote their work abroad. Mary Helen holds a Bachelor of Music with a minor in economics from Vanderbilt University and a Masters in Cultural Policy and Management from City University, London.