You’ve heard of The W (a hotel), The WB (a tv network), TBS (another tv network), and The BLT (a sandwich), and now I present to you–The WTB–updated and explicated.
For those of you just tuning in, the WTB are Women Theatre Bloggers.
Why a list of WTB?
In recent years, several studies have indicated that there is not gender equity in the American theatre. Then, Marsha Norman sounded off on the subject in the November issue of American Theatre magazine, which I wrote about here. Like others, I was deeply bothered by all of this, and I began thinking about what kind of (small) part I could play in improving things, even if it meant merely highlighting the great work of women in theatre here on Drama, Daily.
Then, as part of his year-end reflection on theatre, Chris Wilkinson of the Guardian blog, Noises Off, put together a list of the top 10 theatre blogs. I actually discovered Chris’ list by way of George Hunka’s blog, Superfluities Redux, which received an honorable mention on Chris’ list. And the immediate inspiration for my initial WTB list arose from one of George’s comments: “Looking at the Top 5 list, I see five white males — no women or bloggers-of-color, nobody over the age of 35 or so … talk about your lack of diversity!”
About the WTB List
Compiling the list below has revealed that there are more women out there offering up compelling commentary about the theatre than we ourselves even realized. To date, the list contains 71 Women Bloggers and is international in scope, with writers hailing from Australia, Canada, England, and the United States.
The list is simply arranged in ABC order by author’s last name. I have not made any real attempt to set restrictions for inclusion–beyond requiring a blog (1) be by a woman, (2) contribute interesting, credible, original writing about theatre, (3) exhibit a track record (or the potential for/promise of one)–so some blogs are more established and more frequently updated than others. As in the original list, those with an * before their names are members of the ITBA.
I also have tried to provide a sense of each blogger’s background or affiliation with the theatre arts as well as her physical location in the universe. This was not possible for everyone because some blogs did not disclose this information. Others disclose so much (people in the arts often wear sooo many different ‘hats’) that it was difficult to decide which job titles to include in order to provide accurate yet concise thumbnails of everyone.
It was actually quite a learning experience to read so many “About” pages (and also to read some blogs without one). Some of these profile/bio pages were very detailed, others rather vague. My own “About” page errs in the former direction, I think. How one presents oneself on an “About” page seems, in my estimation, to increase in importance as you hone in on the purpose of your blog, your audience, and your longer term blogging goals (particularly if these goals intersect with your creative and professional goals). Just something to think about…
Since this has become a bigger, albeit rewarding, undertaking than I anticipated, I will eventually move this post to its own page or include it in the ‘Women and the Theatre’ page above.
Goals and Next Steps
The list already has brought awareness and a kind of visibility, which truly didn’t exist on this scale before.
I hope this list will facilitate more dialogue among women working in and/or writing about the theatre AND among women and men working in and/or writing about the theatre. (By no means is this list meant to enact precisely that–gender inequity–which it is trying to overcome.)
I hope this list will also lend itself to camaraderie, networking, and future collaboration.
What are your thoughts on how we can put this list to good use?
For my own part, I will be starting an ongoing interview series of Women in Theatre (as well as Florida Theatre Makers, but that’s for another post). The last week of March I will be interviewing Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Project. If you’d like to be part of this series,do send me an email.
Beyond this, look for my upcoming lists, The ATB (Animal Theatre Bloggers), The MTB (Martian Theatre Bloggers), and The RTB (Robot Theatre Bloggers).
I’m just kiiiiiiding.
Avery, Nicolle et al. Women Playwrights Initiative (Orlando/Central FL).
RVC Bard. Love’s Labors Lost Brooklyn, NY.
Bekah Brunstetter. I Care Deeply (Playwright). NYC.
*Linda Buchwald. Pataphysical Science. (Theatre enthusiast). NYC.
*Jodi Schoenbrun Carter. Off-stage Right. (Theater leadership, management, & fundraising; blog is ‘a strategic look at the process of working in the theater). NYC.
*Wendy Caster. Show Showdown. (Collaborative blog).
Kerry Clawson. From Page to Stage (Arts journalist, critic). Northeast Ohio.
Corine Cohen. Corine’s Corner (NYC arts & culture). NYC.
Rebecca Coleman. The Art of the Business. (Freelance Theatre Publicist) Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Alison Croggon. Theatre Notes (Writer, critic. Also reviews for National Daily). Australia.
Diana Damian. London Theatre Blog.
Cara Joy David. The Huffington Post.
Adrienne Dawes. Oh the Joy. (Playwright) Chicago, IL.
Lois Dawson. Lois Backstage (Stage Manager). Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Rochelle Denton. Plays and Playwrights (Editor). NYC.
Jill Dolan. The Feminist Spectator (Writer & Professor). Princeton, New Jersey.
Christine Dolen. Drama Queen (Theater Critic, The Miami Herald). Florida.
Jamie Dunsdon. Verb Theatre (Artistic Director of Verb). Calgary, Canada.
* Be sure also to check out THIS by Jamie about gender equity in Canada.
Susan Elkin. The Stage Blogs (Freelance writer, Theatre Education and Training). North Kent, UK.
Joanna Erskine. Cluster (An interactive blog for playwrights) Australia.
Sabrina Evertt. An Unidentified Production (Artistic Producer of 20-Something Theatre) Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Esther. Gratuitous Violins (Editor, theare enthusiast) New England, US.
Kate Foy. Groundlings (Freelance Artist, Voice/Dialect Coach, Former Academic). Australia.
Lyn Gardner. Guaridan theatre blog (Theatre Critic, The Guardian). London.
*Diana Glazer. Lezbehonest.
Stephe Harrop. London Theatre Blog.
Joanne Hartley. Northern Creative (Theatre Writer and Director, Northern Creative Theatre Company). Leeds, England.
Samanta Hayes. Working Artist’s Blog (Actor, writer). Canada.
Jess Hutchinson. Violence of Articulation (Director). Chicago.
Joyce ? Mel: Hot or Not (Chinese-Australian intellectual property, IT and media lawyer). Australia.
Kate Shea Kennon. Irish Stage in NYC (Freelance theatre and culture writer). NYC.
Nancy J. Kenny. So You Want to Be an Actor? (Actor, writer). Ottawa, Canada.
*Yvonne Korshak. Let’s Talk Off-Broadway. NYC.
Catherine Kustanczy. Play Anon (Freelance journalist & broadcaster). Toronto, ON, Canada.
*Tulis McCall. Usher Nonsense. NYC.
Donna Migliaccio. The Mig Spot. (Actress). Virginia.
Megan Mooney. Mooney on Theatre. (Writer & site editor, Making theatre accessible) Toronto, Canada.
Kristen Palmer. Plays with Others. (Playwright, Summary and Analysis of Plays).
Anne Marie Peard. Sometimes Melbourne (Freelance Writer, Reviews of Australian Theatre). Australia.
Elizabeth Maupin. Attention Must Be Paid (Theatre Critic, Orlando Sun Sentinel). Orlando, FL.
MK Piatkowski. One Big Umbrella (Artistic Director). Toronto/Ontario, Canada.
Jana Perkovic. Guerilla Semiotics (Writer, Structuralist Analysis of Arts & Culture [?]). Australia.
Carolyn Raship. Caviglia’s Cabinet of Curiosities. (Writer, Director, Illustrator) Brooklyn, NY.
*Monica Reida. Fragments. (Theatre Student) Chicago, IL.
*Sarah Roberts. Adventures in the Endless Pursuit of Entertainment. (Law) NYC.
Wendy Rosenfield. Drama Queen (Freelance Writer & Theatre Critic for Philadelphia Inquirer; DQ is an Artsjournal weblog). Philadelphia, PA.
Jessica Ruano. The Most Exquisite Moments. (Writer’s musings on theatre) Ottawa, Canada.
Angela Sauer. Angela Acts (Actor, MFA student) Florida.
Marissa Skudlarek Marissabidilla. (Playwright). San Francisco.
*Jan Simpson. Broadway and Me. (Writer, Former Editor, Critic, Academic) NYC.
Chloe Smethurst. Dance Out There (Freelance Writer). Australia.
Nicole Stodard. Drama, Daily. (Writer, Critic). Florida.
Augusta Supple. Augusta Supple (Director, Playwright, Writer). Australia.
Lee Strimbeck. WAM Theatre Blog (Co-Artistic Director, WAM Theatre). Pittsfield, MA
Nadine Thornhill. Adorkable Thespian (Playwright, Actor). Ottawa, Canada.
Kristen van Ginhoven. WAM Theatre Blog. (Canadian born Co-Artistic Director, WAM Theatre). Pittsfield, MA.
Chloe Veltman. Lies Like Truth. (Writer & Broadcaster) San Francisco, CA.
Katherine Lyall-Watson. Brisbane Performing Arts Blog (Playwright, Critic). Australia.
*Kim Weild. Blog (Director, Choreographer, Teacher, Writer) New York.
Write Response. (A writing collective by 5 women in the arts: Gai Anderson, Stephenie Cahalan, Anica Boulanger-Mashberg, Kylie Elizabeth Eastley, Sara Wright). Tasmania.
Jenn Zuko. Bonzuko (Movement Arts). Boulder, CO.