Artwork for MTC’s 2019 Women in Theatre Program to include new stream for technical practitioners
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MTC’s 2019 Women in Theatre Program to include new stream for technical practitioners

8 Nov 2018

Melbourne Theatre Company’s Women in Theatre Program continues in 2019 with the introduction of a new stream dedicated to providing opportunities for women working in Lighting or Sound Design.

The core program and new technical design stream will provide a total of 14 opportunities for women working in the theatre industry.

MTC Executive Director Virginia Lovett said, ‘Our Women in Theatre Program has always been focused on creating opportunities for women; arming them with tools, knowledge and experience to support their professional development and have fulfilling careers. This aim remains unchanged as we enter the sixth year of the program and see it grow once again, incorporating specific opportunities in technical fields.’

The core program caters for 12 emerging and mid-career professionals, providing leadership training, practical career advice and coaching across a wide range of business and commercial aspects of the theatre industry, while offering open access to all facets of MTC.

Over a 12-month period, participants have the chance to familiarise themselves with the culture and inner workings of a major state theatre company and gain insight into its audiences, venues and ongoing core business. The participants also receive one-on-one mentoring from a respected practitioner in their chosen discipline.

The new technical design stream offers a further two women paid design associate placements on MTC 2019 productions. These paid positions are reserved for women dedicating their professional practice to Lighting or Sound Design.

MTC Producer and curator of the Women in Theatre Program Martina Murray said, ‘Each year we undertake a review of the program and find ways to reshape its content to address the evolving needs of the sector. The introduction of placements for creative technical roles seeks to provide practical pathways that begin to redress gender disparity in these areas on Australia’s mainstages. Within the core program there are new aspects as well, including sessions dedicated to stress management, grant writing and building confidence in managing personal finances.’

Designed to change and evolve with the needs of the sector it’s important that the program begins look for practical pathways to begin to redress the gender disparity in creative technical roles on our mainstages.

This MTC initiative was established in 2014 as the Women Directors Program and later expanded in 2016 to the Women in Theatre Program to include a broader range of disciplines. Entering its sixth year in 2019, the program has supported 56 women in their career development to date and continues to provide invaluable opportunities for women working in the sector. Since 2016 the program has been supported by MTC’s Women in Theatre Giving Circle. 

Applications for the Core Program are now open. Technical Design applications will open in December.

For more information about MTC’s Women in Theatre Program and other artist access initiatives visit

Published on 8 November 2018