Magnitsky Awards
Committee Member’s Bio

Natalia Kaliada

Co-founder and Artistic Director of Belarus Free Theatre

Committee Member

Natalia Kaliada MBE is the co-founding Artistic Director of Belarus Free Theatre (BFT), an award-winning theatre-maker, writer and director. As an internationally renowned diplomat and human rights campaigner Natalia has pioneered a unique method of transversal lobbying and campaigning, uniting artistic, geopolitical, environmental and human rights concerns, to bring systematic change to different societies.

Working alongside We Remember Foundation and Free Belarus Now, Natalia took part in high-profile negotiations with Hillary Clinton, Former US Secretary of State, and Hon. William Hague, Former Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, focused on the implementation of targeted economic sanctions against Alexander Lukashenko and others responsible for the repression of the Belarusian people.

Forced to leave her home in Minsk for her work as a political campaigner and as the co-founder of Belarus Free Theatre – the only theatre in Europe banned by its government on political grounds – Natalia sought asylum in the UK in 2011 where she is now a political refugee.

Natalia originated the Global Artistic Campaign Free Belarus which has received the support of numerous leading contemporary artists and politicians including BFT Patrons Sir Tom Stoppard, President Vaclav Havel and Harold Pinter. In 2000/2001, the US State Department gave her two Meritorious Honour Awards for Personal Bravery and Courage.

Natalia has hosted masterclasses at world-leading universities and institutions including: Central Saint Martins, RADA, LAMDA and CCODS (in the UK); ENSAT, Lyon (in France); Brown University, Tisch School, NYU and Georgetown University (in the USA).