On 10 June RTYDS joined more than 100 other arts organisations who have signed up to the Freelance Task Force, led by Fuel Theatre. RTYDS joined in recognition of the crucial role freelancers play in the industry, and the importance of organisations, funders and government listening to what they have to say about how we manage the response to and recovery from the Covid-19 crisis in the performing arts sector.

Today we are announcing Gitika Buttoo as the director RTYDS are sponsoring to join the Freelance Task Force. Gitika is a British Indian theatre director from Yorkshire. She graduated from Liverpool in 2016 with a BA Hons in Drama & English. She assisted James Brining on Ode to Leeds at Leeds Playhouse as part of a JMK Trust bursary in 2017 and then went to work for The Octagon Theatre in Bolton as their Participations Director. There she was Assistant Director on main house productions and directed all their youth theatre productions. She became the Artistic Associate of Birmingham Opera Company in Summer 2018 before moving on to work with the National Theatre and CAST, SBC Theatre and Lung Theatre.

Each organisation has taken a different approach to recruiting a freelancer. RTYDS came late to the process and we wanted our involvement to actively contribute to the diversity of the freelancers engaged in the task force. We therefore did not invite applications, but contacted an artist who we felt would bring their creative insight, breadth of knowledge and artistic experience to the task force. Gitika is a former participant on an RTYDS scheme who brings knowledge as a maker, facilitator and community engager.

Recruitment is ongoing, but we wanted to share what we can about representation in the taskforce so far: https://fueltheatre.com/freelance-task-force-representation/