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Devoted & Disgruntled 12: What Shall We Do About Theatre and the Performing Arts Now?

How can I be an advocate for my female colleague

Joanna Greaney - 16 January 2017

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I called this session in response to other fantastic sessions on women in theatre at this D and D. I wanted to create an action plan to help us all move forward. When I called the session I invited both men and women to participate. I had hoped more men would participate in the conversation. Next year I hope more men will participate in discussions of this nature.

Citing research:

When there is a job notice, women will only apply if they have 100% of the skills required, whereas men will apply if they have at least 60% of those requirements. And it also goes that organisations will hire men who only have 60% of skills because of their potential. Research shows this is not the case in regards to a women's potential in the same situation.

Men do not feel the need to get the qualification that will get them the job. They will apply without having obtained the qualification.

See Awesome Women Facebook page for more information on this research there you will find their 9 point manifesto.

Form self-created networks ( similar model to an Old Boys Club, where most deals and conversations happen before meetings)

This is not about excluding men, it's about championing women.

Sometimes to you need to tip the balance over to the other side in order to gain equilibrium.

Don't be afraid to cause a ruckus.

If you are in a situation, meeting or otherwise:
- a woman says “Sorry I was bossy just then”, pipe up and say “no need to apologise, you were being assertive, not bossy,” in order to empower, not belittle.

- offer space for a woman to speak up, then use their name and acknowledge what they said, and then say “have I got right what you were saying?”

- in Reference to Stella's session when it was said that in Iceland, the women encourage each other to say, “I heard her say it first.”

- form a Buddy System - make a pact to bring up another woman's concerns/issues and vice versa. You will both be heard differently.

Mary Beard said recently, “there are more women attending University andegree teaching at University than ever before, now they are saying that University isn't all that it's cracked up to be.”

Emma Rice'speaks resignation from the globe - the need for more feminists (male and female) on boards

Organisations like the idea of what a woman could bring that would be of benefit, but in reality are afraid of the changes required.

As a woman ages, she gains confidence and cares less. It is said that generally as a women ages she gets more radical, men get more conservative.

There is a tendency of men questioning the ability of a woman to do the job she was hired to do.

There tends to be more women in roles such as operators or arts admin, rather than as sound/light designers or Artistic Directors.

Scary Little Girls has a charity mandated policy to employ more women than men. Get in touch!

SaffRon Records- for women in music

Arts Education Company Satsuma.

Action Steps:
- Visibility is imperative - it's about making yourself known and seen
- apply for jobs, don't wait to be asked thinking that if they really wanted me, they would have asked me.
- Keep Calling It Out - if you see acts of misogyny or a lack of inclusion, Call It Out.
- Be direct and assertive
-this is still seen as a woman's problem in society so we have to fix it

See also

Womens Equality Party
Tonic Theatre Research

Thank you to all the attendees
Lizzie
Jenny
Wendy
Anne
Adrienne

And a special thanks to Phill who shared her experience and wisdom in relation to this topic!



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COMMENTS: 1

Clare Murphy

20 January 2017

Thanks Joanna, this is great. Much food for thought. I've been championing women since D and D, or doing it more openly. I felt quite empowered by the session on female leaders.

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