Three hours on a train up from Sydney are some really wonderful beaches. On the October long weekend there is also an arts festival. But, let’s be honest, mainly there are beaches.
I was asked to come up to the Crack Theatre Festival with This Is Not Art to talk on a panel about blogging and criticism. Normally when I got to a festival I do everything and drive myself insane and to the point of exhaustion. However, TINA found itself at the end of several exhausting months and at the beginning of a month of festival related travel, so I decided to take it slow.
How slow? In four days I went to: seven shows, one walking tour, two launches, one closing party, one workshop, four panels (plus the one I was on), and one rooftop market.
But it still, somehow, felt nice and slow. I spent time walking around Newcastle and its beaches, I went to the museum, I had long breakfasts and long lunches and long barbeques.
To Quota or Not To Quota was perhaps the healthiest panel on representation of women and culturally diverse backgrounds in theatre I’ve been to. Maybe because Crack is such a youth-oriented festival many of the artists in attendance have only just started to come into their professional practice, and they have come into a world where the conversation – and the numbers – about women in theatre in particular have been at the forefront.