Brian Debnam studied geography at Durham University, arts
administration at the Polytechnic of Central London, theatre direction
at the National Institute of Dramatic Art in Sydney and financial
administration at the University of South Australia.
During a career in arts and cultural management of over
35 years he has worked in Australia and the UK, in the management of
touring organisations and arts buildings and theatre companies, as a
senior arts manager for funding bodies (Northern Arts, Australia
Council), a principal of an arts training college, a theatre director,
producer and designer, and as Director of Resources for the Sage
Gateshead (a large Lottery funded new building for music performance and
education) overseeing the building programme for the operating Trust
and setting up governance, budgetary, financial, HR and business
In 2003 he established his own consultancy practice
that provides project management services, feasibility studies for arts,
cultural and educational capital and revenue projects and
organisational development and business planning in UK and South Africa.
He has taught financial management in the arts for the
MA in Cultural Management programmes at Northumbria University and the University of Witwatersrand
He is Chair of the Board of Theatre Sans Frontieres and a Board member of GEM Arts.
2003 - 2005 – Associate
Centre for Cultural Policy and Management, University of Northumbria
2000 – 2003 Director
of Resources, North Music Trust, The Sage Gateshead.
1999 – 2000 Acting
General Manager, North Music Trust.
1992 – 2000 Head of
Performing Arts, Northern Arts.
1989 – 1992 Programme
Director, Expressive and Visual Arts Programme, Department of Further Education, South
1987 – 1992 Director
Centre for the Performing Arts, Adelaide
1983 – 1987 Artistic
Director, Harvest Theatre Company.
1981 – 1983 Freelance
Theatre Director, Designer, Teacher.
1977 – 1981 Artistic
Director, the Stage Company, Adelaide,
1976 – 1977 Assistant
Director State Theatre Company of South
Australia.1975 – 1976 Resident
Director the Sheridan Theatre, Adelaide.
1974 – 1975
Coordinator International and Entrepreneurial Programme Australia
1972 – 1974 Assistant
Administrator, Arts Council of South Australia.