Page last updated at 08:22 GMT, Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Women to watch in the arts list revealed

Moira Buffini
The National Theatre's writer-in-residence Moira Buffini is on the list

An inaugural list of 50 women to watch in the arts has been chosen by a panel including the BBC's Jenni Murray and playwright and actor Kwame Kwei-Armah.

The list includes directors, producers and curators who make a contribution to cultural life across the UK.

The Cultural Leadership Programme (CLP) received UK-wide nominations for consideration by the panel.

It said it hoped the women would redress gender balance at senior level in the cultural and creative sectors.

The list includes Moira Buffini, the National Theatre's writer-in-residence; Seonaid Daly, producer of the Glasgow Film Festival and the Phoenix Dance Theatre's artistic director Sharon Watson.

The Cultural Leadership Programme was launched in 2006 as a partnership of Arts Council England, Museum Libraries and Archive Partnership and Creative and Cultural Skills.

Its research suggested that male leaders outnumbered female leaders by two and a half to one across the field in 2009.

The women to watch are expected to lead the way in design, libraries, literature, museums, heritage, music, performing and visual arts, the historic environment and creative businesses.

Murray said: "The final 50 women were chosen after a great deal of consideration by the judging panel and represent some of our most ambitious and talented cultural leaders.

"While we are obviously celebrating the achievements of outstanding individuals, it is also important to see these women as a collective force and as representative of women's potential to reach the top of their game within this, and any other, sector."

The judging panel was headed up by BBC Radio 4's Murray and also included Dame Liz Forgan, chair of Arts Council England; Jenny Sealey, artistic director of Graeae; Rita Clifton, CEO of Interbrand; Sarah Weir, head of arts and cultural strategy for the Olympic Delivery Authority and multi award-winning choreogrepher Wayne McGregor.

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