John Derrick to chair Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

John Derrick, Chair of Royal Welsh College of Welsh and Drama

John Derrick has been appointed to Chair of the Board of Directors of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. 

An experienced leader in investment and private banking, Mr Derrick’s career includes senior roles at Barclays, Lombard Odier and Goldman Sachs.  He currently contributes to the conservatoire’s development and fundraising as chair of the RWCMD London advisory group. In his new role he will serve as a Director of the College and, as Chair, will be a member of the Board of Governors of RWCMD’s parent, the University of South Wales. 

 Announcing the appointment, Gareth Williams, Chair of the Board of Governors of the University of South Wales, said:

“This is a strong appointment for the RWCMD in particular and for the USW Group as a whole.  John’s professional reputation in the financial world and strong Welsh roots are matched by his well-known love for the arts.  We are delighted to appoint him to chair the Board of our national conservatoire, and under his stewardship we look forward to the College continuing to develop and prosper as an asset for Wales and an internationally recognised educator in music and drama.”

 Educated at Ysgol y Strade, Llanelli and Wadham College, University of Oxford, John Derrick is the Chair of Pimlico Opera and a trustee of the Orion Orchestra.  Commenting on his appointment, he said:

 “I am delighted to join the Board of the College at this exciting time in its development. The College is a world class institution based in Wales with strong links between the arts and the creative industries - ensuring that talented students are able to study in Cardiff and develop their careers in the global arts industry. I look forward to working with the Principal, academics and students to support their aspirations and ambitions in the future.”  


Notes to editors

The appointment is made for a three-year term, beginning in August 2017.

The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, the National Conservatoire of Wales, and part of the University of South Wales Group, operates within its international peer group of conservatoires and specialist arts colleges. Its young artists drawn from around 30 countries to provide a constant flow of emerging talent into the music and theatre industries and related professions.

In June 2011, the College opened new £22.5 million performance and rehearsal spaces. The world-class facilities include the Richard Burton Theatre, the Linbury Gallery, foyer performance space, rehearsal studios and the Dora Stoutzker Hall.

The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama was recently ranked No.1 in the Guardian University Guide’s subject tables for Drama – the third time it has taken the top spot in the past five years.

In Music the College scored highly for its graduate employment record, and was the only conservatoire outside London to achieve more than 90% of graduates employed within six months.

In July 2017 the RWCMD Board announced that George Caird will act as interim principal until the appointment of a permanent principal, expected to take up post in 2018.