Violet Territory, led by Rosa Merás and Silvia Pereira, is a multidisciplinary festival that values the work that society and the performing arts do in favor of equality. This initiative stems from the need to show, also in the world of fairs and festivals, an egalitarian vision of the world. Its original name was “From pink to violet”, but, of course, along the way blue appears as an essential part of the project, blue that when mixed with pink, gives violet, the color of feminism. In its first edition Violet Territory includes Mueca in its festival itinerary and will reward the show that best promotes equality. We put on the violet glasses to delve into this topic with Silvia Pereira, responsible for the project.
When and how was the Violet Territory project born?
Territorio Violeta is a very recently created company that operates in almost all fields of the performing arts. Production, management and distribution are the areas of greatest influence. It was born from the crossroads of Rosa Merás (Arteatro) and Silvia Pereira (Behind the scenes), both with similar but complementary careers and dedicated to the Performing Arts for more than 20 years. Among their concerns, they intend to work with a social and denunciatory theater, with their own production of one or two plays a year.
Among its main projects, the VIOLETA TERRITORY FESTIVAL stands out, a festival of Fairs and Festivals with the theme of equality.
What are your medium and long-term goals?
Working in favor of equality is one of our main concerns, that is why we have created the Violet Territory Festival, where we intend to reward theater, dance, circus works, in short, of any performing art, with a look of equality. Due to the characteristics of the Festival, the companies have to be scheduled in one of the Fairs or Festivals that participate that year in the edition and also decide to present themselves to our Award. We believe that this implies a lot of field work, on the one hand, the Fairs and Festivals question whether they have proposals that are likely to be awarded and the companies have to reflect on whether their productions are egalitarian or not, we hope that, in In the not too distant future, all the shows programmed in all the fairs will be candidates to receive an award.
What is the reality of equality in the performing arts today?
The performing arts do not differ from the rest of society, quite the contrary, they are a true reflection of it, in terms of equality, the performing arts are no exception, the participation of women is a minority and is also conditioned by gender stereotypes .
The MUECA International Street Art Festival of Puerto de la Cruz is included in your itinerary for 2018. How has the selection of festivals been made?
The idea of inviting five this year and perhaps six in future editions, between Fairs and Festivals that make up our awards selection grid, has to do with an intention to extend the work and reflection on equality to the entire year and throughout the Spanish territory. We really want to have each and every one of the autonomous communities, but due to the dynamics of the Festival in June we have to have our programming resolved, MUECA gave us the opportunity to include a Festival of international prestige, with street shows and also be able to have With the Autonomous Community of the Canary Islands, which for us is geographically the furthest point and therefore opens up our radius of influence to the maximum, MUECA is a luxury that we could not miss.
What characteristics does a show have to meet to be awarded by the Violet Territory Festival?
This is undoubtedly the most unique point of the festival and for now the most controversial. It should be clarified that this is not a Festival with women's shows, made by women and for women, it is decisive for the objective to be understood.
There is a wide range of shows that can be awarded, of course they have to be of a professional nature, of quality and with parity records, that is, a percentage of between 40 % and 60 % of participation between men and women.
Shows that explicitly focus on denouncing a problem of inequality, some kind of discrimination based on gender, even violence can be awarded, but not necessarily, in fact our preference is for shows that implicitly develop equality and that, not being so obvious in their content, they have an egalitarian view of the figure of women, where women do not necessarily have the roles of mother of, sister of, wife of and/or prostitute, as we are usually accustomed to seeing and Rather, on the contrary, they show us the roles of free women who provide society and the collective imagination with active, current, contemporary female references that we want to resemble, those that we imitate.
Are the performing arts a true reflection of the inequality between men and women?
Without any doubt, the figures do not lie and the situation of women in culture is almost symbolic, the figures are overwhelming. WE ARE STILL INVISIBLE! Female unemployment triples in relation to male.
If we talk about actresses; It is almost impossible to occupy the position of director in professional productions with repercussions in the sector.
-The playwrights who publish are a minority and practically never manage to be produced and programmed.
-The technical and design world is dominated by men.
-Observing the medium, only an approximate 3% of the relevant executive producers are women.
Within the parallel activities of our Festival will be the Presentation of the study that the Sgae Foundation has done on the sector: Equality in the performing arts. Realities and future prospects.
-How can we, from the role of spectators, contribute to improving this situation?
Being aware that we are in a society that advances in rights and equality, that this is recognized in the legislation, but despite the legislative advances, on a day-to-day basis, women continue to be relegated to secondary positions, it is important for want to change it.
Know that we do not have social, cultural or historical examples. That they have left us out of the textbooks, as if the scientists, the politicians, the writers, the professionals... had never existed, it is important to begin to change it. Stop accepting that we have always been less in all fields and understand that society has denied us access to almost everything, it is necessary, to understand that when we managed to stand out, we were left without a voice, we were made to disappear, we were covered up. , hid or ignored. This, unfortunately, continues to happen, it is not part of the past, it is not a situation that has been overcome.