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The Research Reports

From 2018 – 2019, Sphinx worked with academic and playwright Jennifer Tuckett at the University of Cambridge on a major new research project into Women in Theatre.

This activity took place alongside work by the December Group, a new group of women in theatre, who have been meeting with Arts Council England over the last year to advocate for gender equality in theatre.

The December Group includes:

  • President of Equity Maureen Beattie
  • co-founder of ERA 50: 50 Polly Kemp
  • the first black female playwright to be produced at the National Theatre, Winsome Pinnock
  • Artistic Director of Sphinx Theatre, Sue Parrish
  • Director of Art School and University Women in the Arts and academic Jennifer Tuckett, who has most recently been conducting the world’s first major mixed methods research project into how to improve the transition for women from studying the arts to working in the arts at the University of Cambridge
  • the first female director at the National Theatre and playwright, Julia Pascal
  • Artistic Director of Watford Palace Theatre, Brigid Larmour
  • Artistic Director of Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Elizabeth Newman
  • Stage Directors UK’s Jemma Gross
  • former Graeae Literary Manager and playwright Chloe Todd Fordham.

This mixed methods research project is made up of 4 reports:

What Share of The Cake, the Quantitative Report

Report Two – Women Centre Stage Symposium, based on the 2019 Women Centre Stage Hampstead Theatre Symposium

Report Three – Interviews, a Qualitative Report drawing on 10 interviews with NPO Artistic Directors

Research Report 4 – Recommendations, the Recommendations Report

Sue Parrish, Artistic Director of Sphinx Theatre, said: ““We are in a new era and we look towards a redrawing of the cultural landscape”.

Jennifer Tuckett,  academic, playwright and Director of University Women in the Arts, said: “Over the last year we’ve been working on this mixed methods research project on Women in Theatre. Coming from a single parent family, I know how hard it can be to feel you can be part of the arts and it has been brilliant to see the success of University Women in the Arts’ mentees like Titilola Dawudu (“Hear Me Now”, Theatre 503) and Samia Djilli (assistant producer, Tamasha). We hope this  research will help lead to more concrete action to address gender inequality in theatre. Research from Australia has shown the impact specific initiatives for women can have and participants in our research project unanimously asked for specific initiatives, funding and concrete action and for everyone to work together to make lasting change”.

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