The Festival Team

The Swaledale Festival now has four part-time professional staff: Artistic Director Malcolm Creese, Administrator Jill Armstrong and job-share pair Emily Rowe Rawlence and Heather Hodgson who are the new Marketing and Box Office Co-ordinators. During the Festival fortnight they are supported by Events Manager Tim Slater, Assistant Events Manager Chris Curry and Artist Liaison Officer Kate Mothersill. The professional team is completed by approximately 130 hard-working volunteers who staff the box office, provide transport and accommodation for artists, distribute brochures, put up posters and steward events.

Malcolm Creese - Artistic Director

Malcolm Creese combines jazz and classical performances at the highest level with extensive film, television and recording work. He was a chorister at St. John's College, Cambridge, and he studied cello at school and at London’s Guildhall School of Music. He worked as a cellist in orchestras and chamber music groups after leaving college, and he switched to double bass in his mid-twenties.

Malcolm toured the world with Cleo Laine and John Dankworth from 1991 to 2001, and with Stan Tracey for six years. He has performed or recorded with George Shearing, Mel Tormé, George Benson, Lee Konitz, Mose Allison, Kenny Wheeler, Sting, Diana Ross, the Divine Comedy, Depeche Mode, James Galway, John Williams, Sir Thomas Allen, John Rutter, the Allegri, Medici, Fitzwilliam and Delmé String Quartets, and the London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, English Chamber, Royal Liverpool, Hallé, Ulster, Hong Kong Philharmonic and Concertgebouw Orchestras. Malcolm’s numerous film soundtrack credits include Sinbad, Gladiator, Shrek, Cold Mountain, Lord of the Rings and Paddington.

Malcolm is a member of 21st Century Baroque and the highly acclaimed trio Acoustic Triangle which includes the pianist Gwilym Simcock and the saxophonist Tim Garland. The trio has performed in concert halls, churches and cathedrals around the world, released four albums, and worked in collaborations with the BBC Concert Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, the King’s Singers, the Choir of Westminster Abbey, the Royal Holloway Choir, the Sacconi String Quartet, Gerard Presencer, Carolyn Sampson and Sir Richard Rodney Bennett.

Malcolm is an experienced record producer and runs his own label, Audio-B. He has taught and examined at London’s Royal Academy of Music and Trinity College of Music. Malcolm was formerly the Chairman of Romsey Arts Festival and the Artistic Director of Petworth Festival. He began his Artistic Directorship of the Swaledale Festival in October 2007.

Jill Armstrong - Administrator

Jill joined the Festival in January 2014, and has lived in Gunnerside in Upper Swaledale for over ten years. Having previously worked with Yorkshire Forward, as well as the Yorkshire Energy Partnership and the Richmond Swale Valley Community Initiative, Jill brings plenty of valuable experience and useful contacts. She is keen on outdoor activities, and is a member of the Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team.

Malcolm and Jill can both be reached via

The Board

The Swaledale Festival is both a company limited by guarantee and a registered charity, with a Board of Directors who are also Trustees of the charity. Several Board members have executive roles which include managing the Festival’s finances, marketing work and helping with the community and education programme. Board members are all volunteers who carry out this work without remuneration.

Board Members:

Sue Miller (Chairman), Chris Bratcher (Treasurer), Gavin Young (Secretary), Elizabeth Bedford, Gerry Broadbent, Janet Hall, Marian Knowles, Maria Laybourn