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National Theatre Wales opens public call for female theatremakers to create 10th-anniversary production

National Theatre Wales artistic director Kully Thiarai
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National Theatre Wales is inviting female Welsh theatremakers to submit ideas for a new production to celebrate the company’s 10th anniversary.

The move comes amid a period of turbulence for the company, which has been the subject of criticism by groups of Welsh artists who claim it has not championed native talent.

The initiative, called Radical Creatures, asks women to pitch “extraordinary, original ideas that explore what it means to be a woman in Wales today”, which could be developed into a full-scale production in 2020.

Shortlisted artists will be paired with industry mentors who will help them develop their proposal, with the final production staged as part of NTW’s birthday season.

NTW has said its new initiative will support the “reservoir of talent, passion and artistry” among female theatremakers in Wales.

Artistic director Kully Thiarai said: “Making art is difficult and exposing for everyone who tries, but making art as a woman presents some specific challenges. Among them, I believe that women are socialised to make less noise and take up less space, to defer and accommodate, to doubt themselves and to fear failure so keenly it can be stifling.”

She said NTW received fewer ideas for shows submitted by women than men, and proposals were often more modest in scale and required fewer resources.

“I wanted to create Radical Creatures to invite Welsh women artists to be bold. It’s a process that I hope supports them to unleash their imagination, innovation and excellence, fearlessly,” Thiarai said.

Submissions are open until January 18, and more details about submission specifications can be found on NTW’s website.

The winning production will be announced in March 2019.

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