Two out of 20 IS bad

This weekend the Sunday Times ran a series of ‘the best of the decade’ lists. Of course I was very interested to see the theatre rundown. Now obviously, these lists are totally subjective and although only the opinion of the section editor, they probably do reflect quite well on what the Sunday Times theatre-going reader might think.

The list only comprised of 20 plays, mostly London productions, most of them from the past couple of years (obviously the archive reviews from earlier in the decade have been mis-filed). Of these, 2 were written by women (one of those a British author). To number crunch: 10%, so down on what we might have expected. (I did the same for film directors in the ‘best of” list and it’s also 10% including films where a male/female team are listed as the directors.)

 So the Sunday Times top 2 plays by women in the last 10 years were:

That Face by Polly Stenham, Royal Court 2007

God of carnage by Yasmina Reza, Gielgud 2008

Really? In 10 years, is that all?

I guess this is a reflection of why 17percent is needed. Our aim is that by the next Sunday Times ‘Best of the decade’, the male:female ratio will have increased exponentially.

And let’s do our own best of the decade: nominations please!

About 17Percent

A campaign to get more plays by women playwrights onto UK stages.
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