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Women in Theatre Scotland: Where next?
Thanks to all who came along to the Traverse on 26th September to discuss this issue. As said at the time, the response to the event was overwhelming. I also want to thank those who could not make it along but who before and after the event made a special effort to talk to me about this is question and express their support for any action. You are part of this too. Attached are the contributions from the three speakers and notes on the discussion which followed.
The key question now is where next? A few of us kicked this off, but this does not imply that we have all the answers – nor that this is a centrally run campaign. Our intention was to raise the issue and see where it took us. Nevertheless, if there is to be change, it is helpful if there is some kind of coordination and the circulation of this report on proceedings is a contribution towards that. I am happy to continue to circulate information and provide a space for people to share ideas.
It was sheer serendipity which saw this event followed up by a week of theatre at the Tron under the title ‘Reclaim the F Word’ and many congratulations to Julia Taudevin for putting together a great platform and presenting such an interesting range of work.
Meanwhile there is a Facebook page established by writers – Feminist Scottish Theatres Network –and Nicola McCartney, Chair of the Scottish Society of Playwrights has posted:
The women playwrights have been meeting together for a while to chat about this issue. We have come up with an idea that we try to organise some sort of theatre industry forum event in early December this year to facilitate a discussion on the way forward. Possibly followed by a direct action day around International Women’s day in March. What do you think?
There were several issues that I am happy to coordinate and to take the lead. The issue of data is central to making the case and I will be working with others in lobbying both Creative Scotland and the Scottish Government. I am also interested in building alliances across artforms- this is not an issue which is just relevant to theatre. All support on these welcome!
Finally thanks to Equity, Federation of Scottish Theatre, Playwrights’ Studio Scotland, Scottish Society of Playwrights for supporting the event; to the Traverse for giving the space and to their staff for being so helpful; and to Jon Morgan for taking notes.
Thanks are also due to Max Beckmann from Equity and Blandine Pélissier from H/F Network, France, to Anne Withers Tradeecosse who was on hand to help with translation for Blandine and to Sheena McDonald for her expert chairing.