Board and Staff
Board of Directors:
Jaimie Dower (Chairperson)
Jamie Dower is Chairman of Waterford Spraoi and is a member of the Board of Directors. He has a longstanding commitment to Spraoi and is a key operational member of the festival’s planning and delivery team. He is an Accountant and Auditor by profession and works with Ernst & Young.Jaimie is the longest serving Spraoi Board Member having been first appointed in February 1999.
Michael Duffy has lectured at Waterford Institute of Technology and continues his interest in education as an advocate for the primary school sector. He has contributed to the work of Spraoi for many years with particular reference to the company’s voluntary engagement. Michael joined the Spraoi Board in February 2005.
Mike Leahy is Artistic Director of Waterford Spraoi. He has been a voluntary Director of ISACS: the Irish Street Arts, Circus and Spectacle network and has fostered links between Spraoi and European street arts networks.Mike has served on the Spraoi Board since January 2002
Tony Sheehan is currently Artistic Director of the Triskel Arts Centre, Cork. He has been one of Ireland’s leading arts managers for many years and has been an advisor on arts and cultural policy to the Irish Government. Tony joined the Spraoi Board in May 2007
Cormac Johnston is General Manager at Waterford Health Park. He has a management background in industry and business. He is actively involved in the community, with a particular interest in sport for young people. Cormac was appointed to the Spraoi Board in February 2015.
Claire Hennebry has volunteered with Waterford Spraoi for over ten years. In this time, she has taken on a variety of roles including: Steward, Act Liaison, Parade Performer, Stage Manager, and Area Manager. She currently works as a Software Developer for a Waterford-based start-up. Claire was appointed to the Spraoi Board in June 2017.
Verena Cornwall is a consultant in arts and heritage across Europe. She is a founding member of Circostrada, the EU network for circus and street arts, and of CircusNext, the EU Platform for contemporary circus commissioning. She was a Street Arts, Cirus and Spectacle adviser to the Arts Council in Ireland for twelve years. Verena is the newest member of the Spraoi board having been appointed in May 2018.
Artistic Director: Mike Leahy
Spraoi Spectacles and Shows, Outreach Projects and corporate events
Working with Spraoi since its inception in 1993, Mike has worked on all of Spraoi’s major productions, both indoor and outdoor. This work involves conception, design, construction and staging. He has also worked extensively throughout Ireland, with touring street theatre pieces. In addition he also carries out both creative and event management consultations for various commercial companies and associations, past/present clients include Waterford, Dublin and Cork City Councils, Bram Stoker Festival, St. Patrick’s Festivals Dublin, Cork and Waterford and Cork European Capital of Culture.
Director: T.V. Honan
Marketing, External Contacts, Sponsorship.
T.V. has worked professionally in the arts since 1989 and is one of the founding members of Spraoi. He has served as a member of the Arts Council, the Cultural Relations Committee at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Waterford City Development Board. He played a lead-role in the development and construction of Spraoi’s Studio complex. He has advised numerous local authorities and public bodies on arts policy was a member of the Festival Committee for the Tall Ships Race Waterford, 2011.
He holds an MA in Arts and Heritage Management (Hons).
Financial Controller/ Administrator: Niamh Colbert
Niamh has worked with Waterford Spraoi for the past 18 years, initially as an artist but in recent years as an Administrator and Financial Manager. She is currently a voluntary Director of ISACS: the Irish Street Arts, Circus and Spectacle network. She has a National Diploma in Fine Art from W.I.T. plus a FETAC qualification in Arts Administration, and an ACCA C.A.T. qualification.