Clore Leadership Programme
Clore Leadership Programme

Female theatre directors in the UK: why the need to "prove" ourselves?

Amy Golding, Paul Hamlyn Arts Participation Fellow 2013-14 explores the roots of confidence (or lack of it) amongst female theatre directors in the UK.

Amy Golding
Amy Golding

Young female theatre directors may have more role models to look up to in 2014 than in the past, but the structures and progression routes to leadership roles in theatre are still not working for them. The 2012 Guardian survey in collaboration with Pentabus Theatre showed women are still badly under-represented in theatre, with a 2:1 male-to-female ratio. The boards of the top 10 subsidised theatres in England were made up of 33% women, and only 36% of Artistic Directors were women.

I worked in a regional theatre for four years as the only woman in the creative team, younger by at least 10 years than my male counterparts, all of whom didn’t seem to be going anywhere in a hurry. I loved my work and the organisation but I was hungry and ambitious; I struggled to work out how I could progress. In this environment I felt the constant need to prove myself - to win approval.

To read or download the full provocation paper, click below.


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