COMMON is a NON-profit arts organisation which exists to support the UK theatre industry in achieving greater socio-economic diversity, and MAKE THEATRE MORE ACCESSIBLE to THE working-class; whether they be artists, audiences or communities.
COMMON specifically exist to support working-class ‘off-stage creatives’. We ensure they have equal opportunity to gain the skills, experience and networks which are needed to build a sustainable career in theatre.
This includes - but is not limited to - theatre directors, producers, movement directors, playwrights, stage managers, set and costume designers, composers and lighting designers.
Our approach is research-led, and with support from COMMON's Board of Researchers, we continually work to better understand the complexities and intersectionality of socio-economic diversity within the UK theatre industry.
We achieve THIS in two ways:
We work as expert consultants in socio-economic diversity with theatres and arts organisations across the UK.
With support from our highly-experienced Board of Researchers, consisting of many of the UK’s leading sociologists and academics specialising in socio-economic diversity and social mobility, we collaborate with organisations to increase the accessibility of their practice in areas including (but not limited to):
Community Outreach and Engagement.
Schools and Education Programmes.
Artist Development Programmes and Opportunities.
Audience Engagement Strategies.
We develop independent initiatives and opportunities, often in partnership with theatres across the UK, to support the skill and career development working-class artists.
These initiatives aim to eradicate socio-economic inequalities experienced by working-class artists, to create equal opportunity and the ability to build sustainable careers in the UK theatre industry.
"Socio-economic diversity in the arts is a tough fight to fight.
It has and continues to be one of the biggest challenges facing theatre in the UK,
and our industry is all the poorer for its lack of accessibility and inclusivity of working-class artists.
There were problems, challenges, and impossible hurdles when I was
starting out from this kind of background, from a deprived community,
but it's only getting harder for the next generation of ferociously talented artists.
I have been so impressed and inspired by the work of David Loumgair
and of COMMON, and wish an organisation like this had existed when I was in my early career.
I admire its mission, its punchiness and its ideas. I admire its desire to work
with existing companies and venues in fuelling this conversation, and collaborating
with them to come up with solutions. I admire its national focus and its commitment to
regions outside the capital, working with communities across the UK who have limited access to the arts.
As an artist from a working-class background, I am thrilled to join COMMON as a Patron to support
this cause, and can't wait to see what ideas are generated and the progress we can all make together."