Kully Thiarai is creative director and CEO of Leeds 2023 – the city’s international year of culture. Having worked with prestigious arts institutions across the UK, Kully is renowned for her bold work exploring themes of diversity and community.

Before taking up her position at Leeds 2023, Kully was Artistic Director and Chief Executive of National Theatre Wales. Her 30year career also includes being the founding Director of Cast – a £22 million performance venue in Doncaster and Artistic Director of Contact Theatre Manchester, the Leicester Haymarket Theatre, Theatre Writing Partnership and Red Ladder Theatre Company. She is a board member of the Manchester International Festival (MIF), The Art Foundation and Leeds based theatre company Slung Low. She is also an Honorary Fellow of Central School of Speech and Drama and a fellow of the RSA.