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Freelancers in the Dark

This research project investigates the social, cultural, and economic consequences of COVID19 on independent arts workers across England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

Freelancers in the Dark Final Report

Our final report is based on our research over the past 2 years, including our interviews, survey, focus groups and creative workshops.

The report includes a discussion of the theatre industry before COVID-19, before exploring the social, economic and cultural impacts of the pandemic, and the responses of freelancers including the ingenuity, resourcefulness and resilience of freelancers across the industry. Finally we outline our conclusions and future recommendations for the industry, including an urgent need to prepare for future challenges.

Our Final Report is now live. Download it Here.

Or you can Read the Final Report here.

If you would like to read the report in an alternative format please email us at  hm19531@essex.ac.uk.

Find out more about the project and research team, or read our blogs or latest newsletter.

Our end of project events took place on Friday 25th and Saturday 26th March, with 2 days of talks, panels, roundtables and more to mark the end of our project and share and discuss our findings.

The event will take place virtually and is free to attend. You can see the full programme and links to recordings of the panels here.

‘We have far more power than we realise’: Challenging gender inequality in the theatre industry

Trigger Warning: Mentions sexual violence As part of our research, we have looked at the impact of various intersecting categories including class, race and gender on the experiences of freelancers. In this blog post, we discuss some of the themes that came up in relation to gender, and some ways to move towards greater genderContinue reading “‘We have far more power than we realise’: Challenging gender inequality in the theatre industry”

Post-it notes

Identity and Giving Voice

Across the six micro commission sites, groups of freelancers responded to various prompts, drawing on themes that had come through strongly in our previous research, including the interviews and focus groups. Two of these prompts were Identity and Giving Voice, explored by groups in Plymouth and Newcastle upon Tyne. As researchers, we were interested inContinue reading “Identity and Giving Voice”

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