Guy Perricone resigns from ABRSM as East and Abbotts step up

- 28 February 2013

Guy Perricone, who has resigned as chief executive of the ABRSM
Photo: Chris Christodoulou

The chief executive of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, Guy Perricone, has resigned after three years at the organisation.

Executive director Leslie East has been appointed to succeed him as chief executive, and Lincoln Abbotts, who joined the ABRSM last year as teaching and learning development director, is to take up the newly created post of director of strategic development.

East has been appointed ‘to continue Guy’s work and prepare the organisation for its next phase of development’, said a statement. He is a former director of music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and publishing director of Novello and Co.

The statement draws attention to the organisation’s increased turnover (from £36.5m to £43.6m) and an annual increase in candidate numbers (from 645,768 to 665,310) over the period when Perricone was in charge.

He took up the post in January 2010 with a career background in banking and, in the four years before taking on the role, as director of the Institute of Contemporary Arts.

When asked, shortly after taking up his appointment, what had attracted him to the role, he told Music Teacher magazine that it had been ‘the idea of being involved in the world of music. As with the ICA before I went there, I had a broad sense of the sector but didn’t really understand what it was about in detail. Another major attraction was that I thought it was a position that would offer a combination of the two worlds I had experienced, and that has proved to be the case.’

Lincoln Abbotts has been promoted to a more high-profile role than that to which he was appointed last year, in a significant move. In joining the ABRSM after having been chief executive of the national music education charity Music for Youth, some asked whether his move was not a step down.  The ABRSM’s statement describes Abbotts as having ‘wide-ranging experience in music, education, broadcasting and access to the arts’.

Sue Cambridge continues in her present role as Executive Director for Finance and Administration.

Colette Bowe, chairman of the ABRSM’s governing body, said: ‘The governing body is immensely grateful to Guy for all that he has achieved with the ABRSM during his leadership and wishes him very well for the future.’

Read the statement here.

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