About Threshold Studios
“Transforming society by creating experiences that widen the diversity of voices in the arts and media landscape”
“Transforming society by creating experiences that widen the diversity of voices in the arts and media landscape”
Threshold Studios are UK-based media arts producers and educators. We are a social enterprise committed to talent and skills development in all that we do.
Threshold Studios has been producing new media art since 1998, with specialisms in moving image, digital and emerging technologies. We also produce and curate high-quality, no barriers festivals with a commitment to democratising arts engagement – enabling those who might not regularly attend gallery spaces to experience surprising and playful art that has meaningful relevance to their lives.
As educators we foster new talent and devise initiatives to offer routes into the arts and media industries, with a particular focus on those from diverse backgrounds and those who are currently under-represented in these industries.
As a consultancy we play a strategic role in the development of the arts and creative industries, mentoring individual artists and creative organisations through periods of change or development. We also work with Universities, businesses, and local authorities to design creative projects that engage both existing communities and new audiences.
Barry Hale MA
Director and Co-Founder
A professional filmmaker for 30 years, with more than 200 film credits as artist, producer, director or writer, including rock videos for major UK and US record labels, artists’ shorts video installations, commercial promotional films and award-winning community access workshops productions. Barry’s work has had numerous international screenings and exhibitions, from Las Vegas to Latvia, from the ICA to the belly of a Stockholm ship.
He is the Co-Founder and Creative Director of Threshold Studios and Festival Co-Director of Frequency Festival of Digital Culture.
For fun, he listens to CD’s of the sounds of ice melting, or washing machines being pushed down stairs.
Uzma Johal MBE
Producer and Co-Founder
Uzma’s background is in broadcast documentary and television production. She has extensive experience of working in the arts and creative media industries.
As a Co-Founder and Director of Threshold, she drives the ethos and vision behind the organisation. A passionate advocate for social change, Uzma’s work has always prioritised participation, innovation and development of creativity in media, technology and the arts in the UK.
Uzma sat on the Arts Council England Area and Regional Councils for the Midlands for eight years. She is currently focusing on brokering partnerships with the HE sector to unlock opportunities for meaningful and sector specific apprenticeships and collaborative production in new and emerging technologies. She continues to provide mentorship and coaching for creative talent as part of her portfolio of work.
She was recognised on the 2016 New Years Honours List and received an MBE for her contribution to the Digital Economy.
She was once described as “a more glamorous Yoda”.
Director of Programmes
Sam manages Threshold’s production slate and is responsible for making sure creative projects happen on time and on budget. An experienced arts production manager, Sam leads the production of festivals within the East Midlands and beyond.
She also leads the delivery of talent and development schemes and internship opportunities for the next generation of creatives.
Throughout her 12 years with the organisation, Sam has lead projects with young people across the region using a variety of art forms, installed art exhibits in a plethora of spaces, ended up locked in a venue, solved countless problems (see point before), produced many schedules and project ideas, as well as extended Threshold’s networks of freelance artists, filmmakers, practitioners and experts.
She continues to grow partnerships with other agencies and organisations to increase the reach and impact of their work, alongside Threshold’s, as well as to deliver new opportunities and programmes.
Her interests include (but are not limited to) Excel, art, health and safety, and tea drinking.
Creative Engagement Manager
Bo Olawoye is a Nottingham/UK based Engagement Curator and Consultant who has worked for visual arts venues locally and nationally since 2001. She has developed, fundraised and managed creative learning programmes within galleries, on the street and inner city areas. Her approach to engagement always has a strong focus on “creative collaboration” empowering people through art to explore social justice and political issues that affect everyone.
Bo has previously worked for Nottingham Contemporary, Tate Modern London, Backlit Gallery/Artist Studios, and New Art Exchange. She also works as a freelancer commissioned by other arts organisations to manage engagement projects, advise on bespoke programmes. She has discussed her work at a variety of institutions including Goldsmiths and Birkbeck University of London, Mark Devereux Projects, Manchester and idle women Lancashire.
As the Creative Engagement Manager she will develop a sustainable community led engagement programme in Lincoln, UK.
Her interests include travel, art and activism, graphic design, BBC Radio 6 music, good quality coffee and vintage clothing.
Marketing and Digital Communications Manager
Kate has over 10 years’ experience of marketing, communications, project management and events coordination within the arts and public sectors. Kate has completed a CIM Professional Diploma in Marketing (Digital Strategy) and a Fine Art BA (Hons) from Leeds Metropolitan University graduating in 2008.
Previously Kate has worked at The University of Northampton, as Marketing Account Manager for School of The Arts and Marketing Coordinator, NN Contemporary Art Northampton as Marketing and Press Coordinator, Inter-Action MK as Creative Producer, and Westbury Arts Centre as Arts Administrator.
With a young son, her hands are pretty full in her time ‘off’, however Kate’s interests include making artwork inspired by neuroscience and data, yoga and going on long walks with her Westie dog.
Hattie graduated from the University of Reading in 2013 with a BA in Film & Theatre.
She started her career directing and producing theatre across London venues, assisting on various productions. In 2016, she produced and directed Luna Park by Donald Margulies and braved the Edinburgh Fringe.
After moving back to the Midlands , Hattie joined Threshold Studios in July 2018. She assists the Directors with the day-to-day running of the organisation, managing diaries and is learning everything production co-ordination.
Her interests include friendly cats, anything Scandinavian, coffee, multimedia performances, innovative stage/lighting design and has an ever-expanding collection of notebooks.
Jo Heldreich BA FCA
Jo is a chartered accountant with strong technical accounting and IT skills backed up by 16 years of practical experience and a logical, hands on approach to getting the job done efficiently. She has a track record of delivering timely, accurate and relevant financial information to a wide variety of audiences, and experience of forming successful relationships at all levels of business.
In 2014 Jo made the decision to set up her own company, Beehive Accountancy Services Limited, with the aim to deliver a high quality outsourced finance function to small businesses. The company provides a range of accountancy services from bookkeeping and payroll, to management reporting and high-level financial advice. Beehive specialises in providing professional services to the not for profit sector where Jo has spent most of her career, both inside and outside of practice.
Donna is a strategic consultant and creative producer with 25 years’ experience in arts and culture, working at senior levels across the private, public sectors and third sectors. She has developed cultural strategy and new partnerships, consortiums and alliances for local, national and international projects and raised more than £10 million investment for culture.
Donna has particular expertise in place-making projects and in creating and initiating arts festivals, special events and creative public art programmes. Donna created and developed an award winning international festival White Night which commissioned 60 new pieces of work over 4 years including the civic soundscape project ‘West St Story’ with Martyn Ware.
Donna was also one of the founding trustees of the Brighton Open air Theatre raising more than £120k through crowd funding. Donna is Associate Director at FEI and a senior research fellow at the University of Brighton specialising in creative leadership and experience economy. Donna also produces immersive and film based projects as producer with Driftwood.
Simon is a freelance Creative Producer based in Lincolnshire and works with a variety of venues, festivals and creative projects across the East Midlands and beyond.
Recent clients have included Transported, Rosa Productions, Lincs Music Hub, Doddington Hall and Peterborough Presents and he is one of the regular Creative Producers on Grantham’s biennial Gravity Fields Festival of arts & science. He was previously Director of Lincoln Drill Hall for 10 years and as part of that role was involved in helping to set up the first Frequency Festival in 2011.
Simon (also known as Mr Holly) is on the Board of Tom Dale Company and Zest Theatre and is delighted to be joining the Threshold team as one of two new Associate Producers and is looking forward to getting more people involved in Frequency 2019 and beyond.
Anthony Wills FCMA CIPFA
Tony is currently Chair of Threshold Studios. He is also on the Board of City Arts.
Previously he was Chair of the Board of Nottingham Playhouse, and remains a Member serving on its Risk Group. Prior to joining the Playhouse he held a senior position at Arts Council East Midlands contributing business and financial expertise to the organisation and its clients.
Tony trained as an accountant and after holding a number of key financial roles entered management, initially as a Chief Officer at Leicester City Council and after taking the City Transport department into the private sector was Managing Director of the plc.
A career spent in the Public, Private and Health sectors has put to good use proven analytical strengths to develop and implement strategic plans which allied with strong leadership resulting in successful outcomes.
Most recently his organisational development skills have been used to help arts organisations faced with the difficult challenge in the current economic climate of ensuring their sustainability and to forge effective relations with stakeholders.
A driven and dedicated Chartered Institute of Marketing professional with extensive experience of working with both developing start-ups and global large scale corporations. Toni has worked both agency and client-side on large multi-faceted global campaigns, including bringing new products to market in new retail categories and strategic innovation in established categories, with considerable integrated marketing and stakeholder experience at Senior Management and Board level.
Her experience includes work in Education, Mental Health, B2B, B2C, IT, FMCG, Tobacco, Arts & Entertainment and charitable sectors, and a proven portfolio of managing large multi-million budgets, using strategic thinking to see return on revenue streams and winning and developing new products and business.
As an Account Director at Four Colman Getty, Chris has been publicising culture and the creative industries since 2008. He works with clients across the UK and internationally, with particular interest in regional festivals and in the meeting points of art and design with science, technology, enterprise and education.
He was nominated as a Rising Star by the Bookseller in 2015 for his work in publishing.
Chris first became involved with Threshold Studios by promoting Frequency, Lincoln’s Festival of Digital Culture in 2013 and has sat on the advisory board since 2014. He holds a first class BA Honours in History of Art from the University of Nottingham and an Advanced Certificate from the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.
Dr. Sarah Barrow
With a career that began in film education and film festival administration in Cambridge, Sarah has gone on to lecture at Anglia Ruskin University and University of Lincoln before becoming Head of the School of Film & Media.
At Lincoln, Sarah was the University lead for Frequency Festival and for the Arts Council-funded arts/digital/rights project 1215.today.
Her research is concerned with the ways in which cinema presents and contests issues of power, and Sarah’s main area of study in this context is Peruvian cinema and culture. She has recently published a book exploring the relationship between cinema, identity and political violence, and has a new project underway on media and feminist activism in Peru.
Sarah is currently Professor of Film and Media at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK.
With a wealth of experience as a facilitator, producer, fundraiser, project developer and manager, Emily has worked for a range of cultural organisations.
Her career began as an actor and facilitator working on a wide variety of engagement programmes with a diverse range of participants and audience members. Throughout her career she has focused on helping to develop young people as decision makers and future leaders through youth-led participatory projects.
Emily is extremely passionate about empowering young programmers and performers and is keen to see young peoples’ voices embedded at a strategic level in all cultural organisations.
Prof. Harriet Gross
After running a bookshop in South London, Harriet undertook a psychology degree followed by a PhD. From starting out as a researcher, she then became a lecturer, taught child psychology, and is now a professor and part of the senior leadership team at University of Lincoln.
Harriet’s research interests have ranged from pregnancy to gardening (she is the author of Psychology of Gardening (Routledge).
In 2013 she was part of a team from University of Lincoln that developed ‘Digital Capabilities’ for the Chelsea Flower Show, a garden structure that responded to Twitter messages and went on to win a gold medal.
Following a move from Head of Psychology to become Director of Innovative Special Projects at Lincoln, Harriet became involved with the School of Film and Media and Frequency Festival. In 2015 she was instrumental in creating an event with Lincoln Co_Lab and Threshold for the 2015 Web We Want Festival at London’s Southbank.
Harriet is also a Trustee of a dementia charity and a community gardening charity.
Threshold Studios is dedicated to the development of culturally diverse arts and media sectors and associated creative industries. We feel passionately that these industries should fully represent our diverse communities, our heritage and the unique identities we each choose to identify with for ourselves.
By establishing and advocating for key working practices that reward knowledge-sharing and collaborative working, we are encouraging those that work with us to strive for change in the wider working practices of the sector.
We believe in the importance of enabling the authentic voice to be heard and in the importance of sharing our individual and collective stories with each other.
The principles of Cultural Equity are at the core of our organisation: the encouragement and collaboration between people of diverse social, economic, ethnic and cultural backgrounds.
These principles are the foundations of our relationships with participating individuals, communities, practitioners, partners and stakeholders.