Mechtild van den Hombergh has been appointed as interim director Academy of Theatre and Dance

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The Executive Board of the Amsterdam University of the Arts (AHK) has appointed Mechtild van den Hombergh as interim director of the Academy of Theatre and Dance. Together with deputy director Anthony Heidweiller, she will form the two-member board of the academy from 11 September.

Mechtild van den Hombergh has an extensive track record in the administration and management of social and (semi) public organisations. Since 2008, she has held numerous (interim) management positions at leading institutions, ranging from the Humanistische Verbond to the Prince Claus Fund. She is also familiar with art education: from 2018 to 2020 she was an interim member of the Executive Board of the Design Academy Eindhoven. Last year she was interim director of the Shoe quarter Museum in Waalwijk. Before 2008, she acted, among other things, as director of the Stichting DOEN and deputy director and member of the Board of Directors of Cordaid.

Leadership expansion

With the arrival of Mechtild van den Hombergh, the management of the Academy of Theatre and Dance (ATD) is composed of two people. The Executive Board of the AHK has decided to do this because the ATD is a complex academy, with sixteen study-programmes at different levels (Bachelor, Master and Associate Degree), divided over three domains (Theater, Dance, DAS Graduate School). This raises questions about the formal lines within the academy, about how to collaborate optimally and about the identity of the academy in a rapidly changing cultural landscape. Together with Anthony Heidweiller, Mechtild van den Hombergh will chart the course of the academy for the coming years and work with the organization on a structure and culture in which all lecturers, staff and students can flourish. She will also develop, with the ATD community, a profile for a definite general director for the Academy of Theater and Dance.

Annet Lekkerkerker, chair of the Executive Board of the AHK, is delighted with the arrival of Mechtild van den Hombergh: “Mechtild brings a wealth of management experience that will be of great value to the Academy of Theatre and Dance. Her personality and her knowledge of public and social sectors and of art education make her the interim director we are looking for. I am confident that together with Anthony Heidweiller she will form a strong executive team that will lead the academy in an inspiring way.”

Mechtild van den Hombergh comments on her appointment: “I look forward to building a future-proof academy together with Anthony Heidweiller and all employees of the Academy of Theatre and Dance. An academy in which everyone enjoys working (together), in which we learn from each other and, above all, in which we offer students the high-quality education they deserve.”