We wanted to mark International Womxns Day 2022 by celebrating some of the amazing and brilliant women that help to create a diverse and accessible theatre. We asked them to talk a bit about themselves and what this day means to them on a personal level.

Find out more about International Womxn's Day including the 2022 campaign #BreakTheBias, IWD missions and partners here.



Sam/SJ, Duty Manager for Sheffield


Selfie of Sam Turner (aka SJ). A white woman with straight blonde hair smiling and wearing a black top.

1) What's your Name? Sam (known as SJ at Theatre Deli!)
2) What is your job title? Duty Manager
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? Since 2016 (I think!)
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? Making lifelong friends
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? Outside of my roles in the arts, I'm studying to be a Personal Trainer and I love strength training at the gym to feel strong
6) What does International Women's Day mean to you? International Women's day makes me think of the strong influential women that guide me through life and bring me joy - my Mum, my late Nana, the amazing women I work with and my inspiring friends
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? A big question! I believe equity starts from a young age - equal opportunities in education and more media representation of women to inspire young people (for example, in sport!)
8) What is your favourite fun fact? My favourite space fact: There's possibly a planet made out of diamonds! (55 Cancri e) 



Pam, Chair of the Board for Theatre Deli

Pam Fraser Solomon, a Black woman with mid-length black hair, wearing an orange top. She smiles and  holds a paper like she is doing a speech.

1) What's your Name? Pam 
2) What is your job title?
Chair
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? 3 years
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? Reaching diverse communities. Building a relationship with audiences across the uk.
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? Travel, walking, culture, history, technological innovations.
6) What does International Women's Day mean to you? Patriarchal systems acknowledging a gap by recognising and including women for an entire day.
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? We are all on a learning journey, which begins with imbedding robust processes to identify inequalities. We can aim to enrich lives and stimulate industry by applying empathy and transferring learning across lived experience of inequalities based on gender, race, disability, age, religion, sexuality, or identity.
8) What is your favourite fun fact? Viola Davis Regrets Making The Help: “It Wasn’t the Voices of the Maids That Were Heard 

 
Bethan, Assistant Studio Manager for London

Professional head shot of Beth, a white woman with a straight blonde bob smiling.

1) What's your Name? Bethan 
2) What is your job title? Assistant studio manager
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? 8 months
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? I'm never ever bored! Performing in shows around the UK, Spain and China. Devising a show for children about plastic pollution. I am excited by work that educates and inspires change while also being really entertaining.
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? I love dancing, singing, yoga and swimming. I like experimenting in the kitchen, (I find cooking really grounding and relaxing), learning about history. I think my work also blends into my hobbies as I love going to the theatre and seeing live performance and always improving my skills as an actor and performer.
6)What does International Women's Day mean to you? A reminder of how much things have changed and still how much has to change to make like fair and equal for women. I'm thinking especially for global majority women, working class women and trans women.
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? Recognising care work as work, closing gender pay gap and ending rape culture for good. 

 

Katherine, Associate Producer for London

Monochrome image of Katherine, a white woman with blonde hair

1) What's your Name? Katherine 
2) What is your job title? Associate Producer
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? 4 years
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? Holding the keys to the Tower of London and being locked in under Tower Bridge whilst producing a show there is definitely something I will always remember.
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? I love to run - it enables me to clear my head. I always feel a renewed sense of strength and ability after a run. I also love sewing and have my own Etsy shop where I sell handmade textile items using reclaimed material.
6) What does International Women's Day mean to you? IWD to me is about celebrating the unity of women, the strength we have, the progress made towards inequality but is also a reminder that there is much more to be done - especially in feeling safe on the streets.
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? Teaching people respect and embedding this from an early age - is a very simple step. However, there are many things that are harder to transform, even the institution of marriage is built upon the 'giving away' of a daughter - of a daughter being 'property'. These subtle and hidden elements still seep into societies view and therefore behaviour towards women. Culturally, there is still work to be done on shifting the preconceived and out-dated perception that all women want to have children - this is even true for amongst women, often females will say to others 'oh you'll change your mind when you're older'. The world and the opportunities women have has progressed significantly and we now need perceptions of what normal or expected of women to catch up.
8) What is your favourite fun fact? Pirates did not wear eye patches because they were one-eyed. Ships were poorly lit and very dark, so they kept one eye under a patch so it was already adjusted to the dark. So when they needed to see, they would switch the eye patch and cover the eye adjusted to light, and vice versa. 



Isabel, Technician for Sheffield

Isobel, a white woman with brown hair leans against a stone wall wearing a t-shirt and blue eye shadow.

1) What's your Name? Isabel
2) What is your job title? Technician
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? 5 months
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? Meeting new people and developing creative projects
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? Painting, Reading, Music
6) What does International Women's Day mean to you? International Women's day means a lot to me because it's a really nice way to bring women together across the world and allows them to empower each other to fight the systemic issues that effects us all in a variety of degrees.
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? Education from a younger age, I also think part of it is allowing a generation with previously held views to fade out. Also stricter rules in the internet around incel culture and other indoctrinating groups that negatively influence young minds.
8) What is your favourite fun fact? Dogs mouths are so gentle they can hold an egg without breaking it.


Kelly, General Manager for Sheffield  

Professional headshot of Kelly, a white woman with short blonde hair.

1) What's your Name?
Kelly Bradley
2) What is your job title? General Manager - Sheffield
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? Since September 2021
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? There have been many - but most of them seem to come from seeing the joy on participants and audiences faces who have been truly effected by what they have seen or the experiences that they have encountered. One such example is when I was working as producer for Made in Corby and Frantic Assembly and had organised a physical theatre taster workshop for a group of adults with profound and multiple learning disabilities. The entire session was a real joy as everyone had a brilliant time - the practitioners had to adapt their workshop to suit its participants, especially as one of them was in a wheel bed with chronic Cerebral Palsy. Their laughter and joy was infectious and you could see that they and their carer were having a really good experience. 
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? I enjoy are reading and listening to audible, going as much as I can to the theatre, writing, and dabbling in some performing when I get the opportunity.
6) What does International Women's Day mean to you? To me it a day to celebrate all women, however they identify.
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? Education and language surrounding women's issues and inequality needs to be addressed, not only for children but across the board, as the Sarah Everard case has revealed. We need to move away from troupes that reinforce gender stereotypes.
8) What is your favourite fun fact? "The fear of long words is Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia. 



Hannah, Technical Manager for Sheffield 

Hannah, a white woman with long red hair wears dungarees and a white tshirt. She stands flexing her bicep.

1) What's your Name? Hannah
2) What is your job title?
Technical Manager
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? 3 years
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? Helping others to achieve their dreams and new skills. I also love to compose music for music projects.
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? Playing with a local brass band, opera singing and composition
6) What does International Women's Day mean to you? International Women's day is a day to remember and celebrate women that history suppressed. It’s also to celebrate all the amazing and diverse ways that women contribute to today’s society.
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? There needs to be more education in schools and homes regarding language and attitudes towards women. Removing outdated stereotypes and allowances such as “boys will be boys” and “she was asking for it” due to how people dress.
8) What is your favourite fun fact? Elisa Zamfirescu was the world’s first-ever female engineer. She graduated from the Royal Academy of Technology Berlin in 1912, after being rejected in her home country of Romania due to prevailing misogyny at the time. She worked at the Geological Institute of Romania for many years, stopping to manage a hospital for soldiers in WWI. When she retired, she became an activist for disarmament. 



Jen, Front of House team member for Sheffield 

Selfie of Jen, a white woman with brown hair wearing glasses and holding up her Theatre Deli lanyard.
1) What's your Name?
Jen 
2) What is your job title? Front Of House
3) How long have you been working at Theatre Deli? 9 Months
4) What has been some of your highlights while working in the arts? It's been great working in such an interesting & inspiring environment. 'Hip Hop Horror' & the Halloween afterparty stands out as one of my highlights. I dressed up as Billy the Puppet from Saw so became involved in the immersive experience we provided, a spine-tingling tour around the building complete with zombie-esque dancers. I also had a laugh interacting with the performers of 'Boris The Musical' & caught most of their highly amusing farce. It was fabulous to see 'The Star Bazaar' in our venue too, with all their glitz & glamour. I once performed as a maid / prop manager for them 10 years ago.
5) What hobbies and interests do you have? I enjoy visiting art galleries & being creative. I draw and paint human anatomy, plants & sea creatures but have dabbled with other mediums including sculpture, fused-glass, subversive cross-stitch & felt-making. I currently have a couple of drawings in the 'Dirty Secrets' exhibition at Fronteer on Exchange Street and volunteer at Sheffield Flourish / CAST (Creative Arts Support Team), a group for people with mental health issues. I often attend local burlesque or drag shows, post-rock gigs and am a huge film-junkie, particularly horror, sci-fi or anything surreal that stimulates your mind.
6) What does International Women's Day mean to you? I watch many feminist lectures by the London Drawing group on subjects such as 'Female Sexuality & The Male Gaze', 'Hysterical Bodies' and 'Who's Afraid Of The Nipple?' which have educated me on the plight of women striving for respect, understanding & equality through the ages so it's an important reminder. For example, as females, any afflictions or illnesses used to be blamed on our wandering wombs! Medical research is still primarily based on the caucasian male; the clitoris (an organ purely for pleasure) was only officially recognised in 1998!
7) What social and cultural changes do you think need to happen to stop societal assumption and inequality towards women? The #MeToo movement has been very powerful in helping men learn what we experience in terms of sexual harassment or abuse & some have taken advice onboard on how to make us feel safer etc but there is a long way to go in terms of addressing these issues because objectification, exploitation, sexism, misogyny & violence is still rampant. The justice system needs drastically improving along with better education for youngsters about sex, pornography and toxic masculinity. We are often criticised for our emotions, yet anger is the most dangerous.
8) What is your favourite fun fact? The brain uses the same amount of power as a 10-watt light bulb.