Graeae Theatre Company’s artistic director Jenny Sealey has warned that UK theatre is still “very male, very white, very non-disabled”.
Sealey spoke out after accepting the company’s award for promotion of diversity at the Theatre Awards UK ceremony, run by the Theatrical Management Association, earlier this week.
She said British theatre still needs to employ more people from diverse backgrounds in order to have a balanced workforce. She added: “We had two disabled people who couldn’t make it [to the ceremony] today – I’m so sad they’re not here because it’s very white, very non-disabled and very TMA and we are something that is very different. We’ve got to start addressing it, it’s not good enough.”
Sealey, who was also artistic director of the 2012 Paralympic Games opening ceremony, added that diversity should be fundamental to arts organisations and not an add-on. “[Diversity] is about employing people,” she explained. “We [Graeae] invite the best person for the job and broaden how we find people and attract them to the company. It’s not an added value,” she said.