DataArts Board member Teresa Eyring penned an article for the GIA Reader that shares the ideas, discussions, and decisions that brought Theatre Communications Group (TCG), where she serves as the executive director, to embrace a commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
Eyring writes, "Over the past five years, Theatre Communications Group (TCG) has taken an active and vocal position on the need for a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive theatre field. We have been approaching this challenge on multiple fronts, and our thinking has evolved dramatically over time as we learn more about equity, ourselves, our history, and the deeply embedded structures of racism and other forms of oppression in our theatre field and larger society.
On the most basic level, we are motivated by the awareness that members of our theatre community — our friends, colleagues, collaborators, and creators — experience injury every day from being marginalized. When they speak out against this injustice, they are often then reinjured by the dismissal of their concerns. Furthermore, we are motivated by the potential leadership role theatre can play in understanding these dynamics and moving toward a more inclusive ecology where all members of our community feel valued. We live in a society where racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and other forms of systemic oppression are always present, though not always acknowledged. But do we want them to be the accepted conditions of our theatre field?"
She makes it clear that the field must become committed to advancing a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive theatre field to help transform the inequities and injustices of a broader culture, and believes "we can all become fierce advocates and allies in the effort to build a more equitable world for theatre and a more equitable world because of theatre."