Executive Chair of Trustees

London (North), London (Greater)
£0.00 - Voluntary
22 Nov 2017
22 Dec 2017
Contract Type
Part Time

About the organisation

Hampstead Garden Opera Trust Ltd (HGO) is a registered company and charity bringing reasonably priced live opera, fully staged with orchestra, to the people of North London. We offer performance and training opportunities to young singers and are champions of the art form, encouraging interest in opera and laying a foundation for up-and-coming talent within the genre.

Critically acclaimed, we have been recognised as one of the finest small opera companies in the industry and punch well above our weight. We have won and been nominated for the Offie for Best Opera Production, which is awarded to the best production outside the West End.

About the role

After many years of service, the current Chair wishes to step down. Hampstead Garden Opera is now looking to appoint a new Chair, who will also lead the steering committee. HGO consider this role to be, on a small scale, a Chief Executive role. It is a wonderfully rewarding volunteer opportunity and the successful applicant will effectively direct a small but professional opera company. Although HGO is small in financial terms, this is not a simple job. It will be a worthwhile challenge for a person of high calibre who has a genuine passion for opera and wants to take the reins of an independent charity and theatrical company.

The Chair will need to be able to think logically and creatively about all aspects of the business and will need to bring together the various trustees and volunteers, harnessing their collective skills and experience to produce memorable and exciting operatic productions.


  • Lead and enthuse the existing volunteer team
  • Ensure the recruitment of new volunteers
  • Maintain and, as necessary, strengthen the team
  • Project the organisation to the public
  • Build and maintain relationships with creative artists
  • Ensure a sufficient flow of donations and grants for the organisation to remain viable 
  • Build the organisation’s capacity

Person description

The person taking on this role may find that it will become a big part of their life, but it is acknowledged that the involvement could be significantly reduced by recruiting more volunteers and developing the balance between strategic and executive action. Applicants need not be musicians, but a love of opera is inherent in the role.

Requisite attributes for candidates to have are wide but the following are essential:

  • Managerial experience
  • Leadership qualities
  • An understanding of work in the voluntary sector
  • Clear thinking
  • Imagination, creativity and commitment

What impact will the opportunity have?

HGO brings high quality live opera at affordable prices to the people of north London. It also provides, at no cost, training and performance opportunities to aspiring young singers. HGO has been doing this for 27 years, but the complexities and challenges have become ever greater. The future health, and possibly existence, of HGO will be substantially determined by the quality of the person taking this position.

What's in it for the volunteer?

The present Chair maintains that this is one of the best voluntary jobs in the world. Every six months, a new cohort of highly talented young singers is engaged by the organisation along with its creative team. In addition to this, the appointed candidate will have the opportunity to become deeply engaged with the Opera scene, dealing with critics, actors, singers and musicians from all walks of life.

The present Chair comments: “Together, they grow, and create a wonderful show. To be a part of this is a privilege and a joy.

Time commitment

The present chair does a significant amount of hands-on work as well as leading and directing the team. The role might take up to two days a week, but this could be reduced by delegation. Ultimately the time spent will depend on how the new chair makes his or her imprint on the running of the company.


The operas are performed at the Jacksons Lane theatre, N6 5AA. This is part of a community centre. HGO is bedded into the local community, and the appointee will need to become a part of this community. Residence in the vicinity is highly desirable but not essential for the right candidate. 

How to apply

All applications will be made to Reach Volunteering in the first instance. You will provide:
A current CV and a covering letter explaining your interest in the role and the organisation as well as what you feel you would bring to the board as the Chair.

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