The Royal Court Theatre Signs Trans Casting Statement Pledging to Always Cast Trans People in Trans RolesPublished on Wed 26 May 2021
This statement is a first step in our commitment to better support trans, nonbinary and gender nonconforming (GNC)* artists.
We will never cast, or endorse a production that casts, a cisgender person in a trans, nonbinary or GNC role.
We will actively seek casting opportunities for trans, nonbinary and GNC people in any role regardless of gender, acknowledging that they are currently underrepresented on our stages and screens.
We recognise that trans, nonbinary and GNC people have intersecting identities (including and not limited to ethnicity, disability, sexuality, class, faith, migrant status) that affect their access to opportunities.
We recognise that white voices are often centred.
We recognise that Black trans, nonbinary and GNC people face the toughest barriers due to anti-Black racism**. We are also aware that colourism is a huge issue***. We commit to challenging these issues through our casting.
We recognise that representation is just one part of a bigger conversation. In our commitment to this we understand we must invest time and resources to better our understanding of the imbalance faced in the arts by trans, nonbinary and GNC artists.
* The statement uses the terminology trans, nonbinary and gender nonconforming to acknowledge that not all nonbinary and gender nonconforming people identify as trans.
If you would like to read more about trans, nonbinary and gender nonconforming identities here are some resources we have found:
** The statement deliberately focuses on the intersection of Blackness and transness. This focus is important in the context of trans history and the activism of many trans women of colour for LGBTIQ+ civil rights, as well as in the context of today. A 2021 report by the Human Rights Campaign Campaign shows us that anti-trans fatal violence disproportionately impacts trans women of colour, particularly Black trans women. Anti-Black racism, misogyny and transphobia mean that Black trans women are most likely to suffer the real life effects of misrepresentation in media, arts & culture.
If you would like to understand more about anti-trans violence and the disproportionate impact on trans women of colour, here are some resources we have found:
*** We can’t talk about racism without talking about colourism. Colourism is the discrimination of darker skinned people and has had a detrimental effect on the Black community and other communties of colour. The representation of the Black experience on our stages and screens is often portrayed by lighter skinned and mixed race people. This has had a huge impact on who is valued, who is deemed to be desirable and who experiences more violence based on proximity to whiteness.
If you would like to understand more about colourism, here are some articles we have found:
For more information, click here.