WITS on the case for IWD

Mar 7 2014 | By More

High profile work for Traverse event

14 IWDBy Thom Dibdin

High profile playwrights, emerging artists and intellectual heavyweights are joining together for a Women in Theatre Scotland event at Edinburgh’s Traverse on Saturday 8 March, International Women’s Day.

The evening of readings, discussions and interventions will raise funds for Women’s Fund for Scotland and Womankind Worldwide.

A discussion and open forum starts the evening from 6pm, with staged performances of brand new scripts at 7.30pm. From 7.15pm there will be a series of encounters created by a group of young theatre makers.

The discussion will examine the role that women theatre makers are playing in Scottish Theatre today. The panels includes playwright Zinnie Harris; actress, director and writer Alison Peebles; performance maker Xana Marwick; and set designer Lisa Sangster. Kate Nelson of Nutshell Theatre will chair.

The short, staged, script-in-hand readings includes new work from, amongst others, Clare Duffy, Catherine Grosvenor, Jules Horne, Nicola McCartney, Stef Smith and Isobel Wright. The discussion is free but ticked with tickets for the performances £6.

The encounter performances have been created by Edinburgh-base live artist and theatre maker Jenna Watt, working with a group of 13 actresses and theatre makers aged 18-25. These will reflect and comment on the inherent inequality and sexism that they experience in the acting industry everyday.

Speaking of the way she worked with the group, Jenna Watt said that they explored the current wave of feminism such as the No More Page Three Campaign, Everyday Sexism and the misrepresentation of women in the media.

Passionate about highlighting their own experiences as performers, they wanted the encounters to show the sexism and inequality they encounter in their professional lives.

Watt told Æ: “I was taken aback by the stories of these young women and their own experiences of inequality in our industry. I’d never even considered what it must be like for actress’ to be defined by their spotlight profiles and be repeatedly let down by casting calls that often seek ‘sexy’ women, with ‘no lines’ but ‘must be willing to dance in their lingerie’.

“I feel that the women in our industry are being seriously let down and misrepresented.”

“Through these Encounters, we hope to promote a feeling of empowerment, enabling men and women to speak out against inequality, inappropriate behaviours and sexism. However this is easier said than done, when you work in a highly competitive industry where standing up to inequality and sexism usually results in losing out on work.”

International Women’s Day Event
Traverse Theatre, Cambridge Street, Edinburgh EH1 2ED
Saturday 8 March
6pm: Discussion. Free (Ticketed).
7.30pm: Staged Readings. £6/£4.
Details and tickets from Traverse website: www.traverse.co.uk


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