Counting Actors: December Stats

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The Counting Actors Project is managed by Bay Area actor Valerie Weak, and began in June 2011 on her own blog. Works by Women San Francisco began hosting the project in February 2014. The archive of all past posts can be found here.

 General information about the project, as well as selection criteria for shows and a show submission form are here.

DECEMBER 2015
December’s count includes 9 shows, bringing the total shows counted by the project to 691 shows.

Here are the stats:

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Playwrights = 22; 4 women and 18 men.
Directors = 12; 5 women and 7 men.
Union Actors = 21; 10 women and 11 men.
Non-Union Actors = 44; 22 women and 22 men.
Total Actors = 65: 32 women and 33 men; 21 Union and 44 Non Union; 60 Local and 5 Non-Local.

Shows included in the December count:

  • Holiday Hi Jinx (Word for Word) Note: This company presents short stories as performance, dividing up the text between the actors. 3 male playwrights on this show.
  • Sheherezade (Playwrights’ Center) Note: an evening of short pieces with 8 playwrights, 4 female, 4 male and 2 directors, 1 female 1 male.
  • Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (Bay Area Children’s Theatre) Note: female director male music director; writers: 2 men music/lyrics, 1 male writer adapted for stage 1 male writer adapted for TYA version.
  • The 39 Steps (San Jose Stage Company)
  • Emma (TheatreWorks) Note: Male director, male music director, one male writer (book, lyrics, music); 4 cast members are non-union interns with the company.
  • Secret of Life (Indra’s Net Theater) Note: Playwright and director are same person
  • Lemony Snicket’s Lump of Coal (Bay Area Children’s Theatre)
  • The Little Prince (Marin Theatre Company) Note: 2 male writers credited for this production as adaptors of source material. This is a Young Audiences show for MTC, not Mainstage
  • Handle with Care (City Lights Theater Company) Note: A female writer is credited with writing the Hebrew in the script, for a character who speaks primarily in Hebrew. She is not included as a playwright above.

Thank you so very much to the audience members and cast members who used the Counting Actors form to contribute show info this month, including Anne Hallinan, Rotimi Agbabiaka, Cassidy Brown, Brian Herndon, Matt Weimer, Kristen Brownstone and Elissa Beth Stebbins.

Please share these numbers with your colleagues and use them to start conversations whether that’s in an online theater chat group, an audition waiting room, or the line for the restroom at intermission. If you’re seeing or working on a show with January performances, go here to learn how to share the info with the project. It’s a quick and easy form that takes less than five minutes to fill out!

Want some bigger picture info? On April 28, 2015 as part of this year’s international celebration of Support Women Artists Now Day/SWAN Day, the Counting Actors project released ‘Not Even, A Gender Analysis of 500 San Francisco/Bay Area Theatrical Productions 2011-2014 from the Counting Actors Project’.

An article about the report, including links to report graphics, key findings and raw data, can be found here.   Please read and share the report as well.

This report was commissioned by WomenArts, a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing the visibility and employment of women artists in all art forms. As part of its mission, WomenArts maintains a Women’s Employment in the Arts webpage, which has links to studies of women’s employment in various art forms.

Statistics for January will go up between February 1st and February 5th.

 

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2 responses to “Counting Actors: December Stats

  1. Hmmm. Glad to see the growing number of Equity roles for women and the equality of women and men nonunion actors. I’m curious about the fact that so many of the plays you listed here are adaptations — 6 out of nine. Some of that is a holiday phenomenon, but otherwise? Anyhow, thanks for the useful and thought-provoking information, Valerie.

    • Thanks Evy! December is always an odd month, because of holiday related programming. A by-product of this project is that I’ve learned a lot about the wax and wane of production cycles in the region, how more Shakespeare shows up in summer months, how things pick up as we move into spring and into early fall. And, it definitely was a high number of adaptations.

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