Being a Minority in Theatre

Participants: Leviathen, Amardeep, Guleraana, Angie, Eduardo


Summary of discussion, conclusions and/or recommendations:

`Overall, the discussion managed to attract a rather wide array of participants from various cultural/artistic/theatrical backgrounds. The first issue to really be broached was the word ‘minority’ and its use as a term of identification, and ultimately, what came about was the question, “Is using this term as a means to identification hurtful`?

Acknowledging the hard facts about the commercial theatre industry as a whole within the western world, it is traditionally-speaking male-dominated, and shown through history, has an under-representation of non-white performers, writers, directors, designers, and producers. In regards to solutions, people expressed a great need for the emergence of/nurturing of work created by artists of various cultural/artistic expression and background.

This led to the issue of theatres which structure themselves around a specific community and how sometimes, they face the issue of only ever really exposing their work to people within that given community. That is a sense of exclusivity comes about, not necessarily intentional, of course. This gave way to question of how do we learn to cross cultures and share with other members outside of our given community. 

Additionally, it led to the question of how an audience sees things, and if theatre is supposed to be a projection of that which is relevant, then why are certain provincial frames of mind still in place`?


Additional Questions:

What would help to improve the situation within the next five years?

For theatres, which create work geared towards a particular community, how do you bring in people from outside of that given community to learn/share?

`Is it really ever possible to represent all members within a given community`?