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Sir Lloyd Dorfman
Sir Lloyd Dorfman

Royal Opera House appoints Sir Lloyd Dorfman as Chair of the Board of Trustees

The Royal Opera House is delighted to announce that Sir Lloyd Dorfman has been appointed Chair of the Royal Opera House Board of Trustees, effective from July 2022.

By Vicky Kington (Head of Communications)
Wednesday 22 June 2022, 11am

With a long-standing commitment to UK theatre, philanthropy and extending access to the arts, Sir Lloyd will lead the Board as the Royal Opera House navigates the aftereffects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the UK’s creative industries, while strengthening its reputation as one of the UK and world’s leading artistic and creative forces.

Sir Lloyd Dorfman, new Chair of the Royal Opera House, said:

‘I am delighted to accept this position as Chair of one of the world's best-loved and most-visited theatres in the heart of London’s West End. As a passionate and long-standing supporter of the arts, I look forward to continuing the fantastic work of my predecessors, ensuring that the Royal Opera House continues to engage with new and diverse audiences in its beautiful Covent Garden home, in cinemas up and down the UK, through new digital channels, or through any one of its dedicated learning and participation programmes that have seen dance and singing embedded in schools the length and breadth of the country.’

In his new role as Chair of the Royal Opera House, Sir Lloyd Dorfman will help ensure the future of the Royal Opera House, sustaining future funding and guaranteeing the Royal Opera House’s central position at the heart of the UK’s vibrant cultural landscape. Sir Lloyd will continue to drive forward the Royal Opera House’s commitment to diversity and inclusion and staging world-class performances and will ensure that children and young people across the country have access to our programmes for free.

Sir Lloyd has been Chairman of Doddle since 2014, and in addition is Chairman of Dorfman Media Holdings, Trustee of BAFTA and Trustee of the Royal Academy Trust, Deputy Chairman of the Community Security Trust, and Trustee of the UK Holocaust Memorial Foundation. He founded the Travelex Group, the world’s largest retailer of foreign exchange, in 1976 and sold the company in 2015. He was Chair of Prince’s Trust International from 2015 to 2021, and of the Prince’s Trust from 2015 to 2018.

He was appointed Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) in the 2022 Birthday Honours for chairing Prince's Trust International.

Alex Beard, Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House, said:

‘Lloyd is a true champion of the arts, with an outstanding commitment to the public good, not least through his work with the Prince's Trust. I very much look forward to continuing our work together as he leads the Board, helping us to navigate the challenges ahead and unlock the many opportunities of the future. I would also like to thank Simon Robey for his wise counsel and outstanding leadership over the last year, when he returned as Chair.’

Royal Opera House Trustee, Sue Hoyle OBE, said:

‘We are delighted that Sir Lloyd Dorfman has been selected as Chair of the Royal Opera House. We know that his passion and commitment to the arts will ensure we move forward from the challenges of the Covid pandemic and embrace a new future for the UK arts industry.’

Sir Nicholas Hytner, Director of the London Theatre Company and former Director of the National Theatre, said:

‘I have known Lloyd Dorfman for 20 years since he became the National Theatre’s most important benefactor and an immensely valued board member. I cannot imagine a better person to chair the Royal Opera House at this time. His palpable enthusiasm for both opera and ballet and his warmth and dynamism all point to an exciting future for a great institution.’

The appointment process was conducted by the Royal Opera House Chair Selection Committee, chaired by Sue Hoyle OBE, supported by Lord Browne of Madingley, Tim Bunting, Dame Vivien Duffield and Indhu Rubasingham MBE, who were joined by Federico Bonelli and Dame Vikki Heywood. Following a rigorous process over five months, Sir Lloyd was unanimously accepted at a specially constituted board meeting on 21 June 2022.

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Royal Opera House Covent Garden Foundation, a charitable company limited by guarantee incorporated in England and Wales (Company number 480523) Charity Registered (Number 211775)