Artistic Director of COMMON, David Loumgair, today announces COMMON: CONVERSATIONS, a new initiative delivered in partnership with Digital Theatre, English Touring Theatre and Stage Directors UK. The inaugural COMMON: CONVERSATIONS event will take place at Pleasance, London on Monday 17 September 2018, with guest speakers James Graham and Josie Rourke.
COMMON is an arts organisation which exists to support the UK theatre industry in achieving greater socio-economic diversity, and help make theatre more accessible to the working-class; whether they be artists, audiences or communities. COMMON: CONVERSATIONS is its brand-new series of live hosted conversations and audience Q&A events with the UK’s most revered artists from working-class backgrounds currently working in theatre, alongside high-profile allies of class diversity, openly and honestly discussing their personal relationships with class and the impact this had, or continues to have, on their careers. Further events in the series will be announced shortly.
To maximise the reach of COMMON: CONVERSATIONS, each live event will be filmed by Digital Theatre. Screenings will then be offered to regional theatres across the UK, featuring exclusive content, before being published on digitaltheatre.com and its multi award-winning education platform, digitaltheatreplus.com. Digital Theatre + reaches over 4 million students in secondary schools, colleges and universities in 65 countries.
All ticket buyers will also be offered a free month’s access to digitaltheatre.com.
In addition, the audience Q&A segments – which will include questions taken through social media platforms – will be released as a free-to-download COMMON podcast.
As part of its commitment to being inclusive and accessible, COMMON are introducing a Pay It Forward (PIF) ticket scheme. The Pay It Forward scheme, and the generosity of those with the ability to pay for a PIF ticket, will enable individuals who otherwise wouldn’t have the financial ability to engage with COMMON: CONVERSATIONS to attend the events.
David Loumgair, Artistic Director of COMMON, said today, “COMMON: CONVERSATIONS is an attempt to encourage the theatre industry to finally, once and for all, fully acknowledge the structural barriers to career progression and accessibility for working-class artists and communities.
We want to encourage the theatre industry to commit to creating real, infrastructural change to address these problems, and by hearing the stories and experiences of respected artists from working-class backgrounds who succeeded in forging sustainable careers, COMMON hope to reveal class diversity as a conscious, crucial part of our history and our future as an industry.”