Let’s face it. Most aspects of theatre are male-dominated, including most aspects of design, directing, and honestly even acting. But I think that it’s time we talk about something that rarely gets discussed - the lack of women in technical aspects such as carpentry, electrics, and sound. Last year on Broadway, only 4% of Broadway electricians were women, while 11% of sound technicians were female and 0% (yes, that’s right, 0%) of carpenters were women.
Last year, I worked as an electrician for a summer stock theatre where I was the only female electrician, and it was rough at times. Although there were no intentions of discrimination, when there was a physically difficult task or task that a woman “might not be capable of,” they would give the job to the men on my team because it was easier than asking me if I felt comfortable doing the task. I’m also not saying that we need all female technical crews or that men are evil and shouldn’t be put in positions of power over women. It just seems daunting for women who want to get into these fields, especially the women who have dreams of Broadway, when the numbers aren’t in their favor.
The first step to solving this is to encourage women who might be doubtful about pursuing a career in one of these fields because they are male-dominated. The only way to change that is by getting more women out there and inspiring them not to be afraid to go for what they want. Everyone deserves to go after their dream.
(All my percentages are from Broadway By The Numbers from the 2017-2018 season)