We hope for a theatre that recognises the full spectrum of humanity’s potential. We hope for a theatre that encourages voices not yet heard to come to the fore. We hope for a theatre that is a fair and fearless place for many kinds of artists to make their work. We hope for conversation, inspiration, and action.
The GAP Salon was founded in London in October 2013 by Amy Clare Tasker, Susan Crothers, and Kate Baiden to connect, sustain, and inspire a community of artists and advocates working for gender equality. We aim to facilitate conversations within this collective and to support initiatives that come from GAP Salon members.
The Salon is an informal space where artists and advocates can exchange ideas and support each other. The Salon meets monthly in person and keeps in touch online between meetings.
Many organisations and individual artists are advocating for better gender representation in theatre, out in the world every day doing important work. But are we aware of the vastness of our own movement? How much stronger could we be if we knew our allies? We hope to help organisations to find enthusiastic new members, and empower individuals to initiate new actions.
Wendy Thomson (FemaleArts) with GAP Salon cofounders Amy Clare Tasker and Susan Crothers at the Southbank Centre WOW Party. Photo by Gideon Hall
In March 2014 we celebrated International Women’s Day at the Southbank Centre with a WOW (Women of the World) Party cohosted by GAP Salon, FemaleArts, and the So and So Arts Club.
A few days later, the Camden Etcetera Theatre’s Women’s Week festival featured Bite The Apple, a showcase of scenes from Lucy Kerbel’s anthology 100 Great Plays for Women. The showcase and accompanying panel discussion were presented in association with GAP Salon.
We have also organised group theatre trips to support plays which address issues of gender equality. Upcoming event information is posted on our Facebook group and GAP Salon website.
In the first six months of the Salon, we have focused on connecting with the many local advocates for gender equality in the performing arts, and articulating our hopes for the future. The GAP Salon website has many links to related organisations, news articles, statistical data, and other resources for advocates and individual artists.
Peyvand Sadeghian, Sakuntala Ramanee, and Teri Levett in Wendy Thomson’s Mature Student in performance at the Southbank Centre WOW Party. Photo by Eliza Power. www.elizapower.co.uk
The Salon is open to all. Wherever you land on the gender spectrum; whatever your age, ethnicity, or orientation; whether you’ve just graduated from drama school or just transferred a show to the West End; whether you’re fiercely feminist or equality-curious: you are welcome.
If you are interested in the intersection of gender and theatre — the balance of women and men onstage and behind the scenes; the cultural gatekeepers who decide what stories we put onstage; gender-conscious casting; the shockingly low percentage of new plays by women; the presence and visibility of artists who identify outside of a male/female binary; gender dynamics from the rehearsal room to the boardroom; challenges faced by artist parents; career advancement opportunities and mentorship for women entering the field; or any related issues you’d like to bring up — then come and join the conversation.