Monday, 5 December 2011

This Is A Man's World

I've harped on quite a bit about how much easier it would be to be an actor who possesses man bits. Check any casting website and you'll see that the amount of roles out there for the boys are far greater. I often think my Spotlight jobs feed has broken as hour after hour passes with no new jobs posted. However, a quick check to the full feed and there's a whole plethora of parts reveal themselves, all ready and waiting for the few men struggling to find acting work. Although there's absolutely nothing I can do it about it, it's still bloody frustrating because there's absolutely nothing that I can do about it. I mean, I realise that I could start writing my own stuff. I could actually invest some time, get my head down and look into putting on something myself. Or, more likely, I could look into sex-change operations.

So if I've already wittered on about this, why am I going on about it all over again? Well, I'll tell you why. It's because I woke up to this news:

On first glance, this sounded like excellent news. I'm one of the few people left on the planet who still hasn't seen Jerusalem but all I've heard is people raving about how good he is so I can only imagine that this is wonderful news and should mean audiences will flock there in their droves. I was a little annoyed that two lead roles were given to the same actor as surely it's far nicer to spread the love around a bit and let everyone have a bite of the juicy apple but at least the good parts were going to a damn fine actor.

However, my happiness was short-lived when I carried on reading and saw that Shakespeare's Globe were producing plays under the title 'Original Practices' meaning that they are putting on all-male productions. I completely understand that this was how they liked to do things back in olden times before they invented women but haven't we moved on since then? Of course, it's nice to revisist these things and give audiences a sense of how theatre used to be but should it really be to the detriment of all the hard-working and deserving actresses out there? Isn't that what we have museums, documentaries and history lessons for? It's bloody hard enough getting work anyway and theatres such as the Globe can feel inpenetrable at the best of times so why are they making this member's only club even more exclusive? Female roles in Shakespeare are hard to come by at the best of times and I'm sure if you asked anyone to name the first five Shakespeare characters that came to their head, most, if not all, would be male characters. So why take away those few scraps left for us actresses and give them to the already over-worked men? Is it not enough that we're taught at school what theatre used to be like? Failing that, I'm pretty sure we've all seen Shakespeare in Love and all learnt a lot from Gwyneth Paltrow bandaging down her breastular area.

There's a total of three companies involved in producing this and I wonder if at any point, anyone piped up and said that it might be nice if there were a few lady types involved. I imagine the second anyone dared mention putting a woman in there somewhere, they were shouted down and were made to realise that it would be a lot easier all round if they just let the men have their fun on stage and let the womenfolk stay behind and earn their living in a call centre where they belong.

I'd love to think that someone will prove my whole blog wrong now and announce a whole season of all-female productions. Honestly theatres. Do it. I dare you to make me feel ridiculous for getting up on my feminist high horse and put on a whole host of plays where women, for once, get to take centre stage. Hmmmm, looks like I'm going to be on this horse for quite a while. Anyone got a comfier saddle?

No comments:

Post a Comment