Dame Darcey Bussell and Edgar Wright among four new honorary fellows celebrated at Arts University Bournemouth


AUB Graduation 2018

Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) is delighted to announce that it has awarded honorary fellowships to four inspiring creative leaders. Graduates celebrated their first steps int

Hosted by AUB Chancellor Sir Christopher Frayling, the honorary fellows delivered inspiring addresses to galvanise the next generation of artists and share their creative learnings. The graduation ceremonies build on the ongoing relationships that AUB develops with leading members of the creative industries to demonstrate the practical applicability of the skills that students are learning at the University every day.

Darcey Bussell, a former Principal dancer at the Royal Ballet for almost 20 years and judge on Strictly Come Dancing, has already built relationships with AUB students. She previously met with Graphic Design, Animation and Dance students to discuss her aerobic dance workout DDMIX, and set them a challenge to explore its potential by designing a range of expressions of the brand that celebrates its key messages of fitness and diversity.

Similarly, Edgar Wright, a screenwriter and producer who also directed Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, has also taken a hands-on approach to developing the students’ skills. He returned to his alma mater earlier this year to provide a Q&A session to AUB Film Production students, passing on wisdom, advice and insights into the wider challenges and opportunities of the film industry today, as well as sharing anecdotes from his time as an Audio-Visual Design student at the University.

AUB selected its honorary fellows not only for their expertise in their individual fields, but for their passion for the arts and drive to inspire the future leaders of Britain’s world-renowned creativity.

Professor Stuart Bartholomew CBE, AUB’s Principal and Vice-Chancellor said: “We are delighted to welcome our new honorary fellows and celebrate careers that span may facets of the creative industries. Inspiring and encouraging the next generation of creative talent is at the heart of everything we do at AUB. To have four pioneering industry leaders on board who share our dedication to creating the artists, designers, directors and performers of the future is an incredible honour.

“We are proud to say that our graduate employment rate is 98%*, demonstrating the value of creativity across society. Adding the wealth of experience, insight and knowledge of our honorary fellows to the resources available to our students will provide them with the skills they need to embark on hugely successful creative careers and to blaze their own trails.”

Darcey Bussell with Jane Wright, Course Leader BA(Hons) Dance

Darcey Bussell said: “I am very honoured. AUB is modern and it is cutting edge, so its graduates successfully feed directly into the creative industries of this country. But for me, it goes further than that… complex societies increasingly rely on the creative individual in whatever field, so an institution like the AUB is playing a very important role in fostering creativity in our next generation.”

Edgar Wright said: I’m thrilled to accept my honorary fellowship from AUB, or as I knew it back in 1992, the Bournemouth and Poole College of Art and Design. I still think very fondly of my time spent there; on the course, extra-curricular work that I did, friends that I made and people that I still work with who attended this institution. I’d like to say thanks to everyone at AUB, and I’d like to also say a special thanks to the whole of Dorset!”

Margaret Calvert, whose career across graphic design, typography and design education spans almost six decades, has an abundance of experience working with students in the arts, having served as a part-time tutor at the Royal College of Art from 1967 to 2001. She is most renowned for her design of Britain’s road signing system, which came into effect in 1965 and remains in place today.

Speaking about being awarded an honorary fellowship, Margaret said: “I’m very much looking forward to the occasion and celebrating the achievements of AUB’s students, as it’s an immense honour to be following in the footsteps of Sir Norman Foster and Betty Jackson. AUB appears to be going from strength to strength and is now stealing the limelight from some of the more established London Art and Design colleges.”

Jenny Beavan is best known for her costume designs on major Hollywood productions including Gosford Park, Sherlock Holmes, The King’s Speech and Mad Max: Fury Road. She said: “I think and hope [institutions like AUB] can offer a glimpse into what the world of theatre, film or TV is and all the various disciplines that occur within those worlds. It’s a chance to experiment, as once you are in the actual workplace it is all about teamwork, so experimentation may be minimal.”

Darcey Bussell delivered her address during the first of the ceremonies on the 28th June. Margaret Calvert spoke at the second ceremony, while Jenny Beavan and Edgar Wright** were a part of the third and final ceremony, both of which took place on the 29th June.