Jonathan Holloway

International Artistic Director and Speaker on Giant Thinking

Jonathan Holloway is a highly accomplished international artistic director, chief executive and cultural leader. Perhaps best known as the mastermind behind Giants - Australia's largest single arts event, he has also led organisations and cities through major change, from London's South Bank and National Theatre to significant international arts festivals. At every turn, Jonathan has achieved success, doubling audiences, increasing profitability and leaving behind lasting memories.

The skills and expertise Jonathan has applied to each of these cities and their arts programs are grounded in organisational leadership and delivery. The lessons he has learned along the way inform each of his keynote presentations.

To many though, Jonathan Holloway is the guy who brought The Feathers and The Giants to Perth. Royal de Luxe's Giants was universally acclaimed as transformative, brought together every part of the city's infrastructure, attracted an audience of over 1.4 million people over three days and had an economic impact of $40 million.

In 2015 the City Of Perth made him an 'Honorary Citizen', an accolade he shares with just five other people including Hillary Clinton.

Nothing short of a Giant thinker, Jonathan is renowned for his detailed delivery, creative leadership and powerful persuasion, corporate storytelling and the celebration of everyday heroes. A humourous, inspiring and compelling speaker, his presentations are jam packed with breakthrough stories from the arts and culture that demonstrate practical strategies businesses can implement to increase productivity, profitability and happiness.

Jonathan Holloway talks about:

Walking With Giants - the behind-the-scenes story of how the Giants were brought to Perth and what it can teach us about having visionary ideas outside our means, influencing above our paygrade and practically delivering way beyond all expectations.

Funny, poignant and inspiring, Walking With Giants is for everyone in business or industry who wants to employ giant thinking and practical strategies to transform the results they are seeing... or for those who simply want to remember or rekindle their passion for what they do with the majority of their waking time.

Jonathan's other speaking topics include:

  • Creativity and inspiration
  • Pitching and political persuasion
  • Health & Safety in the Workplace
  • Risk Management
  • Crisis Management
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Leadership
  • Teamwork
  • Overcoming Obstacles/Adversity
  • Culture Change
  • Goal Setting
  • Effective Communication
  • Constant Improvement

Client testimonials

Jonathan has been an absolute live wire in the arts community and has been really good for entertainment and culture in Perth. He has brought his own flair and his personality has been a big factor in his success. The Giants were the culmination of Jonathan's four years at the Festival. One of the untold stories of the Giants was when Jonathan came to a meeting in my office with me and some of the corporate sponsors and he just won us over with his enthusiasm for the Giants. He just got us all on board. He was so enthusiastic that no one could argue with him.

Hon Colin Barnett MLA, Premier of Western Australia

I’ve worked with Jonathan for over three years. Jonathan is a great orator and teller of stories. He has that unique ability to create wonder in audiences. His blue-sky thinking is a huge talent that he then translates into reality and delivers these wondrous events for audiences to talk about for years to come. Jonathan has presented to our employees on many occasions and they always come out saying ‘that was amazing, really enjoyed the presentation and the humour’. Jonathan captures the audience from the start and brings them on the journey with him – through funny anecdotes and his indisputable knowledge of his subject matter. No one leaves the auditorium feeling bored!

Rio Tinto

I saw Jonathan Holloway present the opening keynote at a national conference and I thought he was brilliant - funny, fast, provocative and inspiring. He really challenged the audience, but not as some kind of ‘rah rah’ motivational speaker, rather as someone who is out there doing it - dreaming large, living boldly, taking meaningful risks and making amazing things happen. He can be highly intelligent, deeply empathetic or audaciously mischievous - sometimes all in the same paragraph. I’d like to see him at more conferences and events, making people laugh, feel, think and then go out and do something special

Andrew Horabin, Professional Speaker, Facilitator and Comedian

I have always found Jonathan to be an engaging and passionate speaker – a storyteller like no other. He understands how to connect with his audience and dazzles them with new ideas and innovative thoughts. We appointed Jonathan as the Artistic Director of the Perth International Arts Festival because we knew that his unique talent and internationally acclaimed reputation for public engagement would build the festival’s special quality – the results have been fantastic and we are so grateful for Jonathan’s work.

University of Western Australia

Jonathan’s passion for the arts and his tenacity have helped him make an important and wide-ranging contribution to the Perth International Arts Festival. Under his inspired artistic leadership the Festival’s international excellence program and collaborations with the local arts have both expanded. Thousands of artists from around the world and from around the corner have brought art of the highest quality to Western Australian audiences.

Perth International Arts Festival Chair

Jonathan’s ability to transform a street performance into a discussion on IT, systems and infrastructure demonstrates his ability to adapt and engage the audience. His insight, humour and enthusiasm infected the audience – in a good way!

RAW Marketing for IBM and CISCO