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.
June’s count includes 14 shows, bringing the total shows counted by the project to 1057 shows.
Here are the stats:
Playwrights = 16; 9 women and 7 men.
Directors = 15; 11 women and 4 men.
Union Actors = 44; 14 women and 30 men.
Non-Union Actors = 47; 24 women, 22 men, 1 trans/non-binary.
Total Actors = 91; 38 women, 52 men, 1 trans/non-binary; 44 Union and 47 Non Union; 80 Local and 11 Non-Local.
Note: the trans/non-binary category counts artists who self-identify with pronouns other than he/she such as they, zhe, hir etc. Artists who use she/her pronouns are included in the ‘women’ group and those who use he/him pronouns are included in the ‘men’ group.
Shows included in the June count:
- Bright Shining Sea (Playground)
- Scapegoat (Playground)
- Quixote Nuevo (California Shakespeare Theater)
- Dry Powder (Aurora Theatre Company)
- Straight White Men (Marin Theatre Company)
- Two Mile Hollow (Ferocious Lotus)
- In Braunau (SF Playhouse)
- Sense & Sensibility (Town Hall Theatre Company)
- Good Better Best Bested (Custom Made Theatre Company)
- Two Minds (The Marsh)
- A Lesson From Aloes (Weathervane Productions)
- Finks (TheatreWorks)
- Hands on a Hardbody (Lucky Penny Productions) Note: female director, male music director are both counted as directors; 3 writers credited on this project are male book writer, female music/lyrics writer and male music writer
- Dry Land (Shotgun Players) Note: 8 additional actors appear briefly in non-speaking walk on roles and aren’t included in this count
Thank you so very much to the audience, cast members and artistic staff who used the Counting Actors form to contribute show info this month, including Matt Weimer, Anne Hallinan, Kelly Ground, Tracy Ward, Norman Gee, and Elissa Beth Stebbins.
Please share these numbers with your colleagues and use them to start conversations in the green room, the lobby or your favorite theater focused social media group. If you’re seeing or working on a show with July 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!
I was privileged to be a guest on podcast ‘The Yay’ hosted by Reg Clay and Norman Gee. If you’d like to listen to our discussion of the Counting Actors Project and more, check it out here.
Want to learn more? Visit the Women in the Arts and Media Coalition website and check out their studies page. You’ll find links to regional, national and international data on representation of women artists in theater, film/tv, literary arts and more, including ‘Not Even, A Gender Analysis of 500 San Francisco/Bay Area Theatrical Productions 2011-2014 from the Counting Actors Project’. This report, commissioned by WomenArts, compiled data from this project to study trends over time. WWSF’s article about the report, including links to report graphics, key findings and raw data, can be found here.
Want to support women artists? Join the WWSF monthly meetup group to attend women-led theater with other supporters! Stay tuned for our 50th meetup!
Statistics for July will go up between August 1st and August 5th.