Get to know us

We’re building our team as well as our venue! Four new members of staff have joined Brixton House this summer and there’ll be many more roles up for grabs as we get closer to opening the theatre. If you’re interested in working with us keep checking for new vacancies here: Join The Team

Read on to find out more about the current team

All photos © Ilayda McIntosh, 2021

NONNY

Photograph of Nonny Nkomo in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
My name is Nonny Nkomo, and I am the new Chief of Staff of Brixton House. My role involves providing HR, operations, and administrative support across all departments. I also implement policies and procedures to make work processes easier.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
Hmmmm… I have been creative from as far back as I remember. I remember at 8 years old I had a flair for breaking things at home and recreating them for what I called “masterpieces”, but my mother didn’t take to kindly to that as I once cut up one of the favourite dresses as it had the perfect colours for a card I was making!! I loved singing and was in choirs throughout primary and high school as well as church.

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
As a family we grew up going to Brixton Market; it was honestly a highlight for us. As immigrants, it was the only place we could buy ingredients for our traditional food and delicacies. It was also vibrant, and we would always look forward to going there as it was guaranteed we would bump into someone who spoke our language. Brixton Market still today is vibrant, eclectic and you will always end up buying more than you had planned for!!! So definitely visit Brixton Market on your next stop in Brixton.

GARY

Photograph of Gary Johnson in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
My role is Executive Director and Joint CEO, I jointly lead the organisation and make sure that the business can support our programme of performances and activities. This includes overall responsibility for Finance and Fundraising, Marketing, Technical and our customer facing operations.  My current focus is managing the construction of our amazing new building in Brixton so that we can open later in the year.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
I have been involved in the arts since my school production at the age of five.

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
As well as the amazing selection of food places in Brixton, I love watching a film at the Ritzy which I have really missed over the last year.

YAW

Photograph of Yaw Manu in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
Hi, I’m Yaw Manu FCCA, Head of Finance. I joined Brixton House in June 2018.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
My earliest memory of being creative is acting in a nativity play in Primary School. I also enjoyed drawing and painting as a hobby.

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
I enjoy the excellent and unique cuisine of a lot of the local food outlets.

RUTH

Photograph of Ruth Hawkins in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
I’m Ruth, and my new role is Senior producer and Dramaturg – I’ll work closely with Gbolahan and Gary to deliver the artistic programme. I’m so excited to be doing this role in a brand-new building in the heart of the community.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
My earliest memory of being creative was being a glow worm in a ballet show! I knew I wasn’t cut out for being on stage – even after going to the Brit school. Behind the scenes is much more for me….

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
Definitely check out the Black Cultural Archives, get a drink and sit in the South London sun. London in summer is the best place to be.

GBOLAHAN

Photograph of Gbolahan Obisesan in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
As the Artistic director and Joint & CEO, my role is to attract good people to our venue. To do that work well, I must build a strong team of staff around me with support and good communication with our Board of trustees. To be in my role, I need to have an interest in different art forms and explore new ways we can be forward thinking, so we can be a leading example to our industry. I will occasionally direct or devise new theatre productions or invite already created shows and artists to come and share their work at Brixton House. If our work is effective, then it will mean our community discover new things about themselves, about us, new creatives, and other people.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
My earliest memory of being creative is having just finished watching the film Bugsy Malone, when I was around 8 years old with my friends going outside to act out the parts we could remember and then returning to the VCR to rewatch to see how accurate we had been. 

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
I would recommend doing a graffiti spotting walk for your Instagram and spending an afternoon in Brockwell Park and perhaps a swim in the Lido.

OLUWATOYIN

Photograph of Oluwatoyin Odunsi in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
Hello, my name is Oluwatoyin, and I am Head of Learning and Participation here at Brixton House. My role is to encourage children, young people, young adults, adults, our elders, families, artists, and communities to engage, play, learn, create, experiment, and become the future storytellers, by taking part in our creative community activities and learning events here at Brixton House.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
Playing the EastEnders theme tune with my euphonium aged 10 years old, at primary school as part of my school’s orchestra.

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
When I want to buy something beautiful, memorable, and bespoke, both as a music lover and an arts lover. I always pop down to visit Diverse and Pure Vinyl Records. Great chillout spaces, cool items and lovely staff.

LANI

Photograph of Lani Strange in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
Hi, my name’s Lani and I’m the maternity cover Head of Communications & Audience Development for Brixton House. My role involves finding exciting ways to talk to our audiences, encouraging them to find their own home at our House.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
My earliest memory of being creative is staging a full show for our neighbours and forcing my sister and neighbour to be my backup/interpretive dancers whilst I sang Christina Aguilera’s ‘Beautiful’. It was a raging success and we made £15 for Cats Protection.

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
I’ve been to some brilliant vegan nights at Brixton Jamm and I love the atmosphere and the delicious food on offer. I also love Brockwell Park and have spent lots of sunny days splashing about in the Lido.

DARRYL

Photograph of Darryl de Prez in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
I’m Darryl de Prez, Head of Development at Brixton House.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
My earliest memories of being creative are writing lots of short stories and making drawings as a young child. I used to organise exhibitions of my drawings in my house, mostly attended by toys and pets! 

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
One place in Brixton I like to visit often is Block 336, an artist-run project space at 336 Brixton Road which regularly presents ambitious and thought-provoking exhibitions and events. I also love Bookmongers, a second-hand book shop on Coldharbour Lane where you can lose hours in exploration and discovery.

SOPHIE

Photograph of Sophie London in front of the Brixton House gold ventilation wall

Introduce yourself and what your role is briefly:
My name is Sophie London and I’m the Marketing Campaigns Officer, I manage the social media and get our message out – online, in print and in person.

What is your earliest memory of being creative?
When I was about 18 months old I got out of my cot and ‘surprised’ my mum with my first art installation – Her bedside cabinet entirely coated in margarine! She says I was very proud of my work.

Recommend one thing to do/see/eat/drink/experience in Brixton:
After a long day in the office I really like to drop in at Three Little Birds on Coldharbour Lane before it gets busy and have a one of their beautifully fresh margaritas and some seasonal Jamaican-inspired snacks while I read a chapter of my book, or sit in the window and watch Brixton go by.


Quickfire Questions with our new starters

LANI

  • As well as working in theatre, that’s where I spend a majority of my time. In 2019, pre-pandemic, I saw 110 shows in a year (how many is too many?!)
  • I love reading everything that I can get my hands on and singing far too loudly. Follow the noise and you’ll be sure to find me.
  • In the last year, I’ve been learning BSL and now have my Level 2 qualification. I can’t wait to keep learning more of this incredible language.

NONNY

  • I have worked in the charity sector throughout my career with experience in HR, Administration, Operations and Senior Management Support. I have also had the privilege of working for Art Organisations in South Africa, where we provided a platform for young people and members of the public to showcase their art through performance, spoken word, theatre etc. as well as workshops.
  • I love cooking for friends and family and this year I had the honour of one of my recipes being featured in a cookbook (Community Comfort) – the money raised from selling the cookbook went to support BAME families during COVID.
  • I love bright colours – so you will always spot me as I tend to be the one wearing something super colourful.
  • I am the mother of a wonderful 18-year-old boy and aunt (but in my language, it is “ncane” – Zulu/Ndebele – pronounced nnn-thhh-aaa-ne -meaning younger mother) to wonderful nephews (18 and 10 years old) and a 22-year-old niece.
  • My family has lived in 7 countries and I can speak 5 languages and a bit of Greek and can weirdly sing the Greek National Athem.

OLUWATOYIN

  • As part of my creative practice, I have always been interested in how transformative art can bring different people and cultures together. Previously working for national organisations like the Drum Art Centre, One Dance UK, and Town Hall Symphony Hall where I was the Learning and Participation Manager. I am totally looking forward to building new partnerships and creating new artistic work with artists and communities here at Brixton House.
  • I love chilling in green spaces and taking part in outdoor activities.
  • I am the queen of karaoke, singing my heart out to each tune.
  • I get excited playing those beautiful round things called 7”/ 12” vinyl records to family and friends. 

RUTH

  • I’ve been lucky enough to have worked at some incredibly inspiring venues such as the Donmar, Royal Court Theatre, the Gate and most recently the Roundhouse  – with amazing artists and colleagues trying to make work that inspires our next generation of artists.
  • I will always be the last one standing at a press night party.
  • I’m also a writer currently working on a screenplay with an amazing female director based on my experiences growing up in south London.
  • I have an unhealthy obsession with garage music and swimming (not at the same time!)
Pictured L-R: Lani Strange, Oluwatoyin Odunsi, Ruth Hawkins, Nonny Nkomo. On the roof of Brixton House, may 2021.
Lani, Oluwatoyin, Ruth and Nonny pictured on Brixton House roof (© Ilayda McIntosh)

Introducing the Brixton House Board

We asked our committee chairs a few questions about why they wanted to represent Brixton House, and what they love about Brixton.

David Bryan
Chair of the Board

Who am I?
I’m a management development consultant that has worked across the public sector for over 30 years. I’m on the boards of a variety of organisations as I’m a passionate supporter of civic Leadership. I’m the Chair of Brixton House and in that role I am a ‘guardian and advocate’ of the institution and its mission.

Why did you want to be part of Brixton House?
I have a long history with the arts and Brixton. I ran a bookshop in Brixton, was the Director of Brixton Village, an arts centre in the 1980s, produced Black Comedy and Cabaret. Brixton House is a consistent part of my commitment to investing in creative enterprises.

Recommend one thing to do in Brixton
When Brixton returns to its vibrant self. My Thursday evening in Brixton with ‘The Lounge’ for a meal, then onto the ‘Wine Parlour’ for quality wine, and finally onto the Effra Hall Tavern on Kellett Road, to hear Jazz Jamaica play jazz and reggae. 


Carole Small

Chair of the People Committee

Who am I?
I have a passion for the arts and have worked in, or associated with, the arts throughout my career. I am a Director of Community Services for a North London Borough and have taught the core modules in policy and management on the Arts Policy and Management MA at Birkbeck, London University for many years. I am Chair of the People Committee. The committee is responsible for making sure that everyone connected to Brixton House feels welcomed and so can thrive, be their best selves and create great work.

Why did you want to be part of Brixton House?
In the distant past, my first job in the arts was at Ovalhouse as an arts administrator and programmer. I’m excited to be part of the team building on the legacy of Ovalhouse creating opportunities for all to experience and make great art in the heart of Brixton. Brixton House is all about diversity – diverse communities, people, ideas, creativity. The future is bright. The future is Brixton. That’s why I’m here.

Recommend one thing to do in Brixton
On a warm evening, exit the tube, turn left, stand at the 133 bus stop. Take in the atmosphere. You might hear the steel pan, drummers or beat box, there might be someone selling incense and posters, you might even be blessed by some preaching. If nothing else you will be amazed, and think ‘Yeah, this is Brixton’.

Abbi Agana
Chair of the Business and Enterprise Committee

Who am I?
Abbi Agana, I have an MBA in Strategic Management and I have had a long career of Strategic planning and Business transformation. In my day job I am Director of Business Excellence and Innovation for Octavia housing. I am a non executive Director on the board of Brixton House, I also chair the Business and Enterprise Committee which focusses on optimising Brixton House’s business impact by ensuring that we have the right infrastructure to facilitate and support all of the exciting things that we will be doing there.

Why did you want to be part of Brixton House?
I am a Brixton native. I grew up in Brixton hill, attended Streatham Hill and Clapham High school and therefore have many fond memories of the area. As a child my mother took me to Ovalhouse theatre regularly to see plays and so when the opportunity arose for me to be a part of Brixton House I was extremely excited to be able to contribute in some way.

Recommend one thing to do in Brixton
Brixton is like it’s own island, it really is a destination, there is so much to do see and taste! Personally I love to visit the Black Cultural Archives because it anchors you to Brixton’s history and then go to the Ritzy to take in a film followed by a drink at the bar which has great views.

Richard Beecham
Chair of the Artistic Advisory Committee

Who am I?
I’m a South London based freelance theatre director, facilitator and coach. I’m a Clore Leadership Associate and a Trustee of Brixton House, where I Chair the Artistic Advisory Committee and sit on the People Committee, supporting the organisation to be its very best.

Why did you want to be part of Brixton House?
I’m really excited to play a small part in helping Brixton House establish itself as a vibrant and distinctive new theatre and cultural hub in this amazing neighbourhood.

Recommend one thing to do in Brixton
One thing to do in Brixton? That’s easy. Get yourself along to Brixton House as soon as we throw open our doors  – make it your own and make it your home.

Mike Bright
Treasurer and Chair of the Finance Committee

Who am I?
I’m Mike Bright, Hon. Treasurer and Chair of the Finance Committee. Brixton resident for almost 50 years and some-time local councillor whilst our theatre was based at Kennington Oval, creating cutting-edge drama to audiences appreciating a diverse, inclusive and often challenging offer when that was still on the fringe!

Why did you want to be part of Brixton House?
It’s going on for a century since Brixton could boast two professional theatre spaces, which Brixton House will now offer.  In addition, we will be providing a hub for artists, artisans and other creative enterprises that will transform what’s available and add new dimensions to Brixton’s already renowned cultural mix.

Recommend one thing to do in Brixton
Shop in Morley’s Dept. store; go for swim in the Recreation Centre; and have a pint in the Craft Beer pub or the Trinity Arms.  Enjoy the sounds, sights, culture and sheer vibe of Brixton.  Come and immerse yourself – and bring your friends!

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