Gender Politics

Writing about and video of theatre pieces that deal with gender, as well as gender issues in the field as a whole.

The Latest

Livestreaming the Arts Equity Summit
Video

Livestreaming the Arts Equity Summit

A three-day summit and arts-integrated experience examining issues of equity both in, and through, the arts.

Friday 22 - Saturday 23 March 2019
Boston, MA
A Call for Exciting Trans Theatre
Essay

A Call for Exciting Trans Theatre

by Nitsan Scharf
18 December 2018
Radical Inclusion of Parent Artists
Essay

Radical Inclusion of Parent Artists

by Lydia Milman Schmidt
5 December 2018
Howlround Theatre Commons
From the World Theatre Map
We’re Not Playing
Essay

We’re Not Playing

A Theatrical Protest Initiative

16 January 2017

Playwright Tiffany Antone discusses Little Black Dress INK’s “We’re Not Playing” initiative, advocating the need for theatrical protest for social change.

Initiatives for Women in Theatre in the UK and Ireland
Essay

Initiatives for Women in Theatre in the UK and Ireland

15 January 2017

Naomi Elster discusses gender imbalances in theatre programming in the UK and Ireland.

Let Them Speak
Essay

Let Them Speak

It’s Time to See More Works from Women Writers of Color on Stages Across America

14 January 2017

Playwright Chisa Hutchinson and Artistic Director Wesley Frugé discuss the current climate for work by playwrights of color, and advocate producing more work by women writers of color.

Women Take Over The Tempest
Essay

Women Take Over The Tempest

10 January 2017

Hailey Bachrach reflects on Phyllida Lloyd’s The Tempest, the final installment of her Shakespeare trilogy featuring all-female casts, produced by the Donmar Warehouse at London’s King’s Cross Theatre.

Where Are the Disappeared Women of the Theatre?
Essay

Where Are the Disappeared Women of the Theatre?

17 December 2016

Rachel Spencer Hewitt talks to members of Mothers Artists Makers, a collective of feminist mothers in Irish theatre with children.

One Queen’s Highly Personal/Subjective Reaction to Taylor Mac’s A 24-Decade History of Popular Music
Essay

One Queen’s Highly Personal/Subjective Reaction to Taylor Mac’s A 24-Decade History of Popular Music

15 December 2016

CJ Byrd on Taylor Mac’s A 24-Decade History of Popular Music, a “communal, intelligent, erotic, participatory, spectacular performance art concert; a marathon survey dedicated to destroying through exposure the racism, patriarchy, supremacy, and fascism suppressing the fabulosity of all our country’s different beleaguered Others over the years.”

A Feminist Manifesto for Playwrights
Essay

A Feminist Manifesto for Playwrights

11 December 2016

Paco José Madden presents fifteen points for a play or other theatrical work to be considered feminist.

Acting Against Sexual Assault
Essay

Acting Against Sexual Assault

The Subject Project

10 December 2016

Playwright Carolyn Kras discusses The Subject Project, in which her period play, The Subject, serves as a tool for addressing sexual assault in both past and contemporary society and culture.

Submitting Like A Man
Essay

Submitting Like A Man

Submitting Like the Future Is Female

7 December 2016

Mya Kagan announces a new project: the Future Is Female Festival.

My Brother’s A Keeper
Essay

My Brother’s A Keeper

Storytelling With Funk Aesthetics

6 December 2016

A new play takes cues from funk music to explore bisexuality, biphobia, and polyamory in 1990s Brooklyn.

What IS a Feminist Play Anyway?
Essay

What IS a Feminist Play Anyway?

What Is vs. What Should Be

5 December 2016

Catherine Castellani continues her exploration of what it means for a play to be considered “feminist.”

Design Meeting
Essay

Design Meeting

My Old Man (and Other Stories)

26 November 2016

Jess Barbagallo and Chris Giarmo discuss design questions for Jess’s play My Old Man (and Other Stories) and the recently increased interest in trans artists.

A Call for Equal Support in Theatrical Design
Essay

A Call for Equal Support in Theatrical Design

23 November 2016

Chicago-based costume designer, textile designer, and wardrobe stylist Elsa Hiltner considers the division of labor and allocation of technical support within theatrical design.

Party Planning
Essay

Party Planning

The Jubilee Answers Questions, Gives Advice, and Asks for Help

14 November 2016

One year into organizing, the Committee of the Jubilee reports out on progress, answers common questions, and re-extends an invitation to the American Theatre to join the year-long nationwide festival of 2020.

Yes, All Men (Need to Listen)
Essay

Yes, All Men (Need to Listen)

Making Room for Womanhood in the American Theatre

13 November 2016

Rachel Bykowski looks at Dana Lynn Formby’s American Beauty Shop and Kristiana Rae Colón’s good friday and asks: is it possible for women playwrights to tell truthful stories of the female experience and male oppression when men hold the majority of leadership positions in the American theatre?

An interview with Melinda Lopez on the State of Female Characters in Drama
Essay

An interview with Melinda Lopez on the State of Female Characters in Drama

9 November 2016

Allison Raynor talks with playwright Melinda Lopez about women on stage: who she writes, how she writes them, and who she’d like to see.

“Put out the light, and then put out the light”
Essay

“Put out the light, and then put out the light”

Emma Rice’s Sudden Departure from Shakespeare’s Globe

3 November 2016

Artistic Director Gideon Lester discusses Emma Rice leaving Shakespeare’s Globe, and ruminates on the tension between artistic and administrative priorities.

Sexism and Spunk Duel Masterfully on Stage at DC’s Keegan Theatre
Essay

Sexism and Spunk Duel Masterfully on Stage at DC’s Keegan Theatre

3 November 2016

Patricia Davis on Keegan Theatre’s production of What We’re Up Against by Theresa Rebeck, directed by Susan Marie Rhea.

A Call to Art
Essay

A Call to Art

Why We Need Independent Women’s Theatre

26 October 2016

Deborah Randall, founder of Venus Theatre, writes about the need for theatrical spaces that support women's voices.

Receiving and Defending
Essay

Receiving and Defending

I Know What I Want and I Know What I Don’t Want

20 October 2016

In this installment, Irene Loy discusses how characters receive desire versus defend themselves against unwanted desire, delving into the difference of consent and dissent.

Submitting Like A Man
Essay

Submitting Like A Man

The Plot Thickens

18 October 2016

Two more of “Max’s” plays receive different responses than Mya’s did, leading her to affirm her belief that bias is at work in the submission process.

Questioning How We Tell Mainstream History with Men On Boats
Essay

Questioning How We Tell Mainstream History with Men On Boats

8 October 2016

Summer Banks talks with Jaclyn Backhaus about bringing the story of Men On Boats to life on stage without any men.

I Know You Are, But What Am I? Finding and Losing Ourselves in Stories
Essay

I Know You Are, But What Am I? Finding and Losing Ourselves in Stories

8 October 2016

Allison Raynor talks with other early-career theatre artists about how the narratives they grew up loving influenced their sense of self.

Shakespeare & Company’s second production of The Merchant of Venice
Essay

Shakespeare & Company’s second production of The Merchant of Venice

1 October 2016

Josh Platt on The Merchant of Venice directed by Tina Packer in Lenox, Massachusetts. 

Hierarchies of Power
Essay

Hierarchies of Power

Cisgender Playwrights and Trans Characters

28 September 2016

In this #IdentityWeek blog, playwright Basil Kreimendahl discusses the representation of trans characters on stage.