Board members and staff

Board members


Paul Patterson – British Music Collection

Paul Patterson is one of the most versatile, successful and internationally-respected British composers of his generation. All the major orchestras in the UK, and in numerous countries abroad, have performed his works, as have eminent ensembles and international soloists. He has a substantial discography, has been the featured composer at many festivals both in the UK and abroad, and has also been BBC Composer of the Week. Music-lovers worldwide enjoy his music as it never alienates – rather, creates an enriching experience that draws both audiences and performers in.

His substantial oeuvre, which includes several prestigious commissions, is stylistically varied; he is known for his sympathetic and often humorous writing for instruments, making a popular and successful name for himself in the choral, brass, organ, orchestral, concerti and children’s music. His composition style of challenging but idiomatic writing has resulted in many of his solo works have been chosen as set pieces for international competitions in Europe, Australia, Israel, Thailand and the USA.

Patterson’s increasing international reputation as one of the foremost contemporary composers for the harp began with the popularity of Spiders. More works are being commissioned currently, and was invited to be the featured composer at the International Harp Congress in Hong Kong in 2017, his 70th birthday year.

Over the course of his career, Patterson has made significant contributions to many of the country’s leading musical institutions. At the Royal Academy of Music he initiated a pioneering series of annual Composer Festivals – an idea swiftly emulated elsewhere. He is a fellow of many of the UK’s leading music colleges and has received several awards in recognition of his services to music.


Priti Paintal – Artistic Director

Priti Paintal was born in New Delhi, India learning piano as a child and later sitar and tabla, and is regarded as a pioneer in the field of cross-cultural music. Born into that includes musicians, eminent scientists and doctors, she studied piano and composition in India where The British Council heard her perform with the Delhi Symphony Orchestra and offered her the chance to train formally in music composition.

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Dr. Alison Kahn – Director, Cultural Heritage and Digital Learning Lab, SDS Group, (Research) UK

Dr. Alison Kahn was trained as an anthropologist at the universities of London (MA) and Oxford (MPhil, DPhil). She works in the digital archive management sector and in academia, lecturing on documentary filmmaking and museum anthropology. She integrates the use of audio-visual artefacts and digital media as tools and products of her research. Her area of study includes the Vatican’s ethnographic collections; colonial and post-colonial discourses in India, focusing on Naga material culture in European museums and Anglo-Indian global diasporas. Alison is Director of the Oxford Documentary Film Institute, Visiting Fellow in Digital Learning Systems at Loughborough University, and Senior Tutorial Fellow in Museum Anthropology at Stanford University’s Overseas Program in Oxford. Her research portfolio spans across museum curatorship, digital learning, and collaborative ethnographic filmmaking. Her current research investigates how children engage with multimedia activities, including: film, AI, and online learning platforms.

Alison is a member of the Mental Health and Aesthetics Research Group at St. Catherine’s College, Oxford, the Public Health Film Society, UK. She is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a member of the Royal Anthropology Institute (RAI).

Her forthcoming monograph: Imperial Museum Dynasties: Papal Ethnographic Collections and Material Culture (2023) will be published by Springer.


Beth James – Co-Founder, Square Pegs Art

Beth James co-founded Square Pegs Arts in 2005, and as Artistic Director/CEO she strategically and creatively heads up the Charity. Square Pegs Arts offers Theatre, Music and Arts opportunities for learning disabled and neurodivergent people across Kent and Medway.

Since gaining her degree in Theatre, Film & Television in 2003, she has had extensive experience writing, making and directing Disabled-led Theatre, and has a diverse background in Arts Development, Event Management, Community Arts and as a Theatre Practitioner. She is passionate about promoting equity and access, celebrating diversity and social activism.

Beth is a mother, is proudly Queer, and lives with chronic/invisible illness.


Anoohya Anoohya – Engagement and Wellbeing coordinator


Staff members

Wendy Catterick – Community Development Manager

Cherie Ward – Festival Producer