Bechdel Theatre began in 2015 as a campaign to get theatre-goers using the Bechdel test to start conversations about on-stage representations of women,
We use the Bechdel test (which is usually applied to films) to reach feminist audiences who are passionate about gender and representation on screen, but might not go to the theatre as regularly. We let them know about stage shows that they may want to see.
Online, we use social media to promote plays where women are notably present. We share and retweet to help female-led and gender-conscious shows of every style and scale to get the audiences and recognition that they deserve, and help feminist viewers choose shows they may be interested to see. Find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram
Offline, at theatre festivals such as Edinburgh, Brighton Fringe, and VAULT, we lend our logo to production posters, using stickers to help them stand out from the crowd and reach audiences who value gender and representation.
Bechdel Theatre Podcast is hosted by Beth Watson and Pippa Sa. It includes reviews, previews, interviews and discussions about gender and feminism on stage.
In a feature called #BringAFeministFriend, the podcast features feminists from non-theatre backgrounds and industries talking about how theatre shows contrast, compare, and relate to other arts, media, and culture.
We generate new work representing a diverse range of authentic female characters and relationships by ‘Bechdel testing life’ – collecting real-life Bechdel test passing conversations to use as inspiration for new plays.
We ask women to record their own conversations, then we give the recordings to playwrights, who create new work in response to what they have heard.
The first night of new plays inspired by Bechdel Testing Life was at Theatre Delicatessen’s Old Library on January 21st 2017.
To facilitate deeper discussion of the roles of women on stage and encourage the engagement of feminists with the theatre world, we set up Bechdel Theatre Festival: A series of pop-up conversations that we co-host with theatres and production companies who want to celebrate a show they’re staging which passes the test with flying colours.
An open and accessible alternative to formal Q&As, Bechdel Theatre Festival conversations take place in theatre bars and cafes, where creatives and audience members are invited to informally share ideas and responses on a level platform.
Become a patron of Bechdel Theatre from $1 per month (that’s about 75p!).
Patrons help pay for our web hosting, podcast recording, sticker printing, and travel to shows and festivals outside London. We thank our supporters with badges, stickers, extended podcast edits, exclusive videos, and up-to-the-minute tips on shows to see.