In Your Own Words: working in the industry (Survey Response Part 1)
We asked a particular set of questions not only to get a snapshot of our readership but also to elicit a sense of how the local theatre community was thinking about some topical issues especially as they relate to ‘independent theatre’ for those survey respondents identifying themselves as professional theatre workers.
Greenroom hasn’t published the results of the survey until now but, given recent discussions in some social media sites which, among other things, are looking deeper into the relationship between what is being called by some respondents and in talk around town the ‘main stage’ and the ‘independent’ sector, I thought it useful to do so. From a personal point of view, I am keen to clarify my thinking on the terms we use to define the activity in the sector and to track the evolving relationship between the ‘main stage’ companies and the ‘independents.’
For the readership of Greenroom it gives some data to feed further discussion. Indeed the results that have emerged from what is a small but reasonable sample of respondents (50 in number) are fodder for further questions. A couple spring to mind: ‘Why are so few professional theatre workers not members of a union or guild?’ and, given the number of respondents who are either trained or continue their training, ‘Are professional development opportunities appropriate and of sufficient quality?’ I’m sure there are other implied questions and inferences from these results.
So, firstly, here are the survey results crunched into percentages. The responses to the two open questions will be in a separate post – Part 2 – to be published tomorrow.
Are you male or female? M: 41.3% F: 58.7%
53.8% of those identifying as professional are female
Are you based in Queensland? 93.5% were
Do you identify as a professional artist or creative? 84.8% did
Have you undertaken a course of formal study in the performing arts? YES: 78.3% NO: 21.7%
82% identifying as professional have undertaken a course of formal study in the performing arts.
Have you undertaken any other performing-arts related courses of study e.g., masterclasses? YES: 91.3% NO: 8.7%
94% identifying as professional have done so.
Are you currently a member of MEAA or another industrial union or professional guild? YES: 39.1% NO: 60.9%
43.6% identifying as professional are currently members of MEAA or another industrial union or professional guild
Have you ever done any independent theatre work? YES: 91% NO: 8.7%
94% identifying as professional have worked in independent theatre
If you answered ‘Yes’ to the previous question, were you paid for this work? YES: 50% NO: 50%
56% of those identifying as professional were paid
If you have identified yourself as a professional artist/creative would you ever agree to work in a production for no remuneration?
97.4% would work for no remuneration
The majority of those who responded to the survey self-identified as professional theatre workers. Of those, the majority
have undertaken a formal course of study in the performing arts and/or continue their training through masterclasses or other courses,
are not members of MEAA, an industrial union or other professional guild,
have worked in independent theatre, and
would agree to work in a production for no remuneration. About 50% have worked for no remuneration for an independent production in the past.
See Part 2 of this post for responses to the following open questions:
- What do you understand is meant by the term ‘independent theatre’ and
- ‘For what reasons would you agree to work in a production for no remuneration?’