For the past three years, the recession, credit crunch, complete financial disaster or whatever you want to call it, has loomed large. I can’t tell you if it’s over, improving or getting worse. Every day seems to provide the media with a whole new slant on the just how terrible it is to be a graduate. Most of us we are bored with both the term and the situation. However as a young aspiring producer, I am starting to question if and how it has really changed the shape of my career. Some of you may think I am mad to question this, but, as many people say, art thrives in adversity.

Obviously, the reduction in potential investors is a very big worry and the lack of good entry level jobs has made it harder to get your foot on the ladder. But in the end, would our theatre careers really be that different if the economy had been booming? I am sure they would be easier, but would they be better?

For one thing, I have never been more motivated to succeed. I am constantly searching for new opportunities, even if I already have projects on the go, perhaps a little manically but I always have certain goals in mind. I feel that the pressure of fewer jobs and increased competition has made me almost hysterical about getting experience. Although this is not particularly good for my state of mind I am starting to as if it’s paying off. For a while I felt as though the financial situation was preventing me from being a producer, but then I looked around me and realised others were doing it, people the same age with the same degrees. They were just being more proactive and thinking outside the box.

It was this realisation that made me stop thinking about the limits of the current financial climate and start looking for the opportunities. Although there are fewer paid jobs there are now more internships. Now they aren’t paid, but they do provide an excellent opportunity to meet people through the position of ‘the person so dedicated they will work for free’. And they now tend to be more flexible, allowing you to work them around another job. It is also the perfect time to start up a theatre company, as there are so many talent people looking for opportunities, paid or not, who just want to make theatre because it’s their passion. And because of this I am excited to start meeting potential writers for my project. We have had an amazing response and I feel that although we are only at the beginning we are going to create work that we are all proud of.

Of course I can’t ignore the funding cuts that will affect subsidised theatres and the knock-on effect that these will have on my future plans. But for the moment I am optimistic and by next week I hope to tell you a little more about my new theatre company, The Secret Theatre Society. I may even have found my writer… watch this space.

Image by Bruce McKay