Blairgowrie’s Shona Rattray has been appointed as the first creative producer of the Birds of Paradise theatre company.
The Glasgow-based theatre company promotes the profile of disabled artists and will now be led by three leaders in the field of disability arts.
Shona, who has been promoted from the position of company manager to her new role, will be working alongside two artistic directors, Garry Robson and Robert Softley Gale.
All three have a strong interest in promoting equality on a local, national and international scale and the new creative team is set to deliver an ambitious plan that will see the company engaging more with the Scottish arts community.
Shona said: “I am delighted to be the first creative producer for Birds of Paradise. I am looking forward to creating a vision for the company with Robert and Garry.”
Liam Sinclair, the chair of Birds of Paradise, said: “The success of the 2012 Paralympic Games in London and the widespread media coverage of the event has raised the profile of disability and the work of disabled artists.
“The positive message that emerged will have inspired a generation of young disabled people.
“Unleashing that talent in an artistic sense will be one of the key objectives of the new team.
“There is no better time than now to push the promotion of disability and the arts.
“Birds of Paradise is at a tipping point in our history and development and our new leadership team is absolutely ideal to take the company forward with a renewed energy and determination.
“Robert, Shona and Garry are individually very experienced and talented and together they will undoubtedly shape an exciting vision, produce artistically strong work and provide a leading role in extending equalities practice in the arts in Scotland and beyond.
Shona graduated from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and has toured extensively throughout Scotland and Europe. Her credits include 7:84 Theatre Company, Magnetic North, Scottish Youth Theatre, LookOUT, Castlemilk People’s Theatre, Theatre Cryptic and Suspect Culture before she joining Birds of Paradise in 2005.
She has been instrumental in recruiting established mainstream artists to Birds of Paradise and in bringing disability arts to mainstream Scottish theatre practitioners.
She has been actively involved in Federation of Scottish Theatre sitting on both its access and touring working groups and is currently the only Scottish representative on the Independent Theatre Councils Board of Directors, which is based in London.