What you will be expected to do

Chair Recruitment

Overall objectives of the role

  • Provide leadership to the Board of Orchestras Live, ensuring it fulfils its responsibilities for governance of the organisation and supports realisation of its vision and mission.
  • Work in partnership with the Chief Executive to develop and deliver the vision, mission and strategy of the organisation.
  • Act as ambassador for Orchestras Live, helping to shape external relationships that will reinforce its national position and strengthen its ability to secure funding from a wide range of sources to fulfill its mission.

Trustees meet as a full Board at least four times a year and there are a small number of standing committees and working groups. Board meetings and an annual Away Day generally alternate between Leeds and London; as our trustees are based in different parts of the country, meetings are usually hybrid so that trustees may attend either in person, or online when distance and scheduling is an issue. Committees and working groups usually meet on Zoom. Papers are circulated by email in good time for trustees to read them thoroughly before the meeting.

The Chair can expect to commit to the equivalent of up to 30 days per year. This includes monthly meetings (in person or online) with the Chief Executive and regular communication with the Chief Executive and/or Company Secretary as required, as well as time spent in preparation and planning regarding governance and strategy. Full day commitments are rare; the expectation would be mostly for half days and 1-2 hour meetings (generally online).

In addition, all trustees are expected to attend at least two Orchestras Live activities a year and contribute feedback for our internal evaluation systems.

Whilst the role is voluntary and unpaid, travel and other appropriate expenses are reimbursed.


We are looking for a Chair for an initial, minimum three-year term; ideally to be renewed for a second term to a total of six years.

Our Chair is appointed by the Orchestras Live Board of Trustees and is accountable to them.

The Role of Chair

The Chair of Trustees has the same legal responsibilities as other Trustees, but has additional responsibilities assigned by the Board.

Board leadership and meetings

  • Chairing meetings of the Board and ensuring that, through the Board and its committees, the Board runs effectively, fulfils its duties and carries out resolutions. Calling special meetings if necessary. Drawing up agendas for meetings with the Chief Executive and Company Secretary.
  • Chairing meetings effectively and sympathetically, creating an environment in which all Board members are encouraged to participate and challenge constructively and appropriately.
  • Ensuring that high standards of corporate governance and ethical, professional behaviour are maintained and, as appropriate, introduced to meet changing circumstances and good practice.
  • Fostering collaborative and effective relationships between the Board, the Chief Executive and the staff team.


  • With the Board, ensuring that financial controls and systems of management and risk are in place and effectively operated, and that the Board is kept informed in a timely and relevant manner of key issues and opportunities and performance against the business plan.
  • To support, challenge and appraise the Chief Executive in managing the organisation, maintaining a balance between artistic and business goals, and ensuring a clear separation between executive and non-executive roles following corporate governance principles.
  • Conducting periodic Board effectiveness reviews, ensuring that new Board members are fully inducted and that existing Board members are contributing effectively.
  • Keeping an eye open for conflicts of interest.
  • Generally keeping in touch with Trustees to ensure that they feel valued and can make a full contribution to Orchestras Live.


  • Representing the Board and organisation to external stakeholders including funders, national and local government politicians, policy makers and the media where appropriate.
  • Being a champion for fundraising, helping to identify and develop relationships with potential and existing donors and supporters.
  • Encouraging Trustees to play an active role as advocates in their networks, attend events and external meetings when the Chief Executive or senior staff would value this.

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