OMNIBUS THEATRE: Hi Marie, how will you be spending this International Women’s Day?
MARIE MCCARTHY: I’ll be here, working.
OT: Which female theatre makers have influenced or inspired you?
MM: Joan Littlewood – her belief that there’s genius in every person, her fight, her galvanising force as a director. Kathryn Hunter, Lucy Kirkwood, Nina Raine, fantastic. There’s just so many.
OT: What would you say are the main challenges facing women in the theatre industry?
MM: Less opportunities to write, direct, make work. Once more women are writing, then more parts for women, more stories about a range of subjects. It’s improving thanks to Women’s Equality Party, ERA 50:50, SDUK and a recent rise in small and medium venues making call outs for writers but we need more women leading organisations , creating work and being decision makers.
OT: What does Omnibus do to ensure collaborations with talented female artists?
MM: When I’m programming I’m actively looking for female theatre makers and directors, because there’s a wealth of talent out there. I’m in the fortunate position to create opportunities. I’m interested in female voices, in those stories.
OT: What tips would you give to aspiring women in the theatre industry?
MM: Find women who are running buildings, be bold, email them and tell them about your work and why they should read your script, meet you. Surround yourself with people who believe in you, find that belief in yourself. If there is nothing else you can do but work in theatre, then do not give up, persevere.