Graham Devlin

Graham Devlin – Cultural Strategist & Former Deputy Secretary General, Arts Council of England

About Graham

Graham Devlin is a creative artist, senior arts manager and cultural strategist. He was Deputy Secretary General and Acting Chief Executive of the Arts Council of England until 1999.

As a stage director and writer, he ran the successful new writing and music-theatre company, Major Road, for over 20 years whilst also working in Dance and Opera, directing and writing freelance for, amongst others, the National Theatre, Scottish Opera, Glyndebourne, Sydney Opera House, Adzido Pan African Dance and the Aldeburgh Festival. Overall, he has directed more than 90 theatre shows. He has also been Director of the Wakefield Festival and Visiting Professor of Cultural Strategy in Edinburgh.

He was appointed CBE in the 2010 New Year’s honours list He has served on numerous Arts Boards and Arts Council and Government committees and is currently Chair of Tipping Point, Vice Chair of the Royal Court Theatre and a board member of Derby Theatre. Previous Chairmanships include Phoenix Dance (1990-97) and DTAP (Dance Training and Accreditation Partnership, 2008-14).


Arts Consultance


As a cultural strategist, he has worked for a number of public agencies, Arts Councils, local authorities and government departments in England, Scotland and Wales including the cities of London, Liverpool, Coventry, Manchester, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Birmingham as well as internationally, in addition to a number of grant-making Trusts and Foundations and Higher Education institutions.

Other clients have included The National Theatre, the RSC, The Lowry, the Edinburgh Festivals, the Royal Opera House, the Art Fund, the London Symphony Orchestra, The V&A, The National Museum of Science and Industry, Ambassadors Theatre Group, the Royal Liverpool Philhamonic Orchestra, the LSO and Free Word as well as many other companies – large and small. He has authored or co-authored a number of publications including Stepping Forward (a National Dance Policy) in 1989; A Place To Think, a study of arts research in the Higher Education sector, a suite of papers on governance in the cultural sector, the book Committing To Culture, a comparison of support for the arts in England and France and, in 2001, the DCMS “Green Paper”, Culture and Creativity: the next ten years.