MDI director to step down after almost 25 years

The artistic director of Merseyside Dance Initiative (MDI) is to step down from her post after almost 25 years.

Karen Gallagher MBE has been responsible for a number of events during her 24-year tenure including hosting British Dance Edition as part of Capital of Culture in 2008.

Through Karen’s leadership, MDI has been involved in a variety of projects working to promote dance across Europe and internationally, such as Cultiv8, Capital Nights Festival and the Pan European project The Migrant Body.

Karen, who will say her goodbyes following the LEAP 2018 dance festival in November, delivered a whole year of dance at various Liverpool arts venues in 2010, while in 2011 she and MDI produced the Decibel Performance Arts Showcase.

Speaking about her decision, Karen says: “I genuinely don’t know where those 24 years have gone!

“MDI has been an amazing professional gift, I stayed so long because there was always a new and interesting job to be done, a project to be set up or festival to produce.

“I am particularly proud of so much, far too much to mention here, but including mass performance projects such as Jump 2000 Feet and The Big Dance NW Link Up, to building an audience for Henri Oguike dance company in those very early days from a small show at the Liverpool Community College to sell out performances at the Playhouse.

“It’s time for me to hand MDI over to someone new to take it forward to the next 25!”

The process of recruiting a new artistic director will begin next week.

About Author: Lawrence Saunders

Lawrence is a journalist at Move Publishing. He can be contacted via email at or by phone on 0151 709 3871.