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The Society of British Theatre Designers

The Society of British Theatre Designer (SBTD) supports Designers at every stage of their careers from students and graduates through to retired Designers offering every member a supportive and active intergenerational community of practice, experience and shared awareness.

SBTD works closely with the Association of Lighting Designers (the ALD), the Association of Sound Designers (ASD), Stage Directors UK (SDUK), and with the trade unions Equity and BECTU. We ensure that the knowledge, expertise and concerns of our members regarding fees, working practices and conditions are fully represented in the re-negotiation of the collective agreements with the Independent Theatre Council (ITC), UK Theatre and the Society of London Theatres (SOLT) which govern the majority of our contractual rights. By supporting our members and the wider theatre design community to achieve better terms of employment, we aim to remove barriers to racial and class diversity within the industry. SBTD is a member of the Creative Industries Federation to help shape social, economic and cultural policy at government level. SBTD situates itself within the International Association of Scenographers, Theatre Architects and Technicians (OISTAT) through which we absorb and disseminate the knowledge and expertise of our worldwide community of design practitioners and educators.

Through projects including our recent exhibition Staging Places: UK Design for Performance exhibition and supporting website www.stagingplaces.co.uk, we aim to shine a bright light on the diversity of practice throughout the UK that constitutes performance design, from pushing the boundaries of the traditional to redefining what a performance space is (a city, a mountain, a shipping container, a warehouse). Through work including The Value of Design initiative www.theatredesign.org.uk/the-value-of-design, we highlight the innovative leading role that designers play in strategic thinking and creative problem solving to build enhanced relationships with communities, audiences and spaces.

Being part of Stage Sight means we can work together more closely and share ideas to promote a more inclusive industry offering creative empowerment of ethnic minority practitioners, disabled and deaf communities, educators, students, artists and audiences reflective of all classes in our society to instigate, shape and influence the work we all make to take centre-stage. It is our collective responsibility as theatre-makers and storytellers to consult with each other to implement practical strategies that support long term change. We will actively seek out opportunities to have open conversations that bring together creative activism and increase solidarity, equality and social justice for black practitioners and practitioners of colour throughout the theatre profession.

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