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Theatre leaders: ‘No room for sexual harassment in our industry’

National Theatre, South Bank. Photo: Milan Gonda/Shutterstock
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UPDATE: Since this story was published, many more theatre organisations have signed the statement. As of October 31, 2017, the list of signatories totals 102.

Leaders of London theatres including the National, the Donmar Warehouse, the Old Vic and the Almeida have jointly called for an end to sexual harassment and abuse of power in the industry.

The statement, signed by 19 theatre organisations including the Society of London Theatre, UK Theatre and the London Theatre Consortium, comes swiftly after the sexual harassment allegations made against former Out of Joint artistic director Max Stafford-Clark, and in the wake of those about Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein.

It said: “We salute the bravery of everyone who calls out this abusive behaviour. We support a theatre culture that empowers people to speak up: a culture where abuse of power is always challenged.”

The statement is also signed by the leaders of venues including the newly opened Bridge Theatre, the Lyric Hammersmith, Shakespeare’s Globe and the Royal Court, which is hosting a ‘day of action’ on October 28 in response to recent events.

It added that it was the responsibility of the industry to create a culture where “unacceptable behaviour is challenged and addressed”.

“We want to be absolutely clear and say again: there is no room for sexual harassment or abuse of power in the theatre. Everyone deserves to enjoy a happy, healthy and safe working environment. We will support you to speak out, and we will hear you when you do.”

The other organisations whose leaders have signed the statement are Battersea Arts Centre, the Bush Theatre, the Gate Theatre, Hampstead Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company, Soho Theatre, Theatre Royal Stratford East, the Tricycle Theatre and the Young Vic.

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