Society of London Theatre welcomes new Associate Membership cohort  

The Society of London Theatre (SOLT) has announced its second cohort of Associate Members. Six future theatre industry leaders including producers, writers and directors will join the organisation for a period of two years. 

The new cohort includes a diverse group of professionals, each bringing their own expertise and perspectives to London’s vibrant theatre scene. Members have contributed to notable works such as ‘For Black Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When The Hue Gets Too Heavy’, ‘Blue Mist’, ‘Thriller Live’, and ‘West End Musical Brunch’. 

Launched in March 2023, the ‘Associate Membership’ scheme aims to identify and support emerging leaders in London’s theatre industry. It specifically targets individuals who may not qualify for other categories of SOLT membership, with the goal of fostering diversity and inclusivity within the sector. The scheme offers members the chance to build connections, enhance their industry knowledge, and serve as stepping stones towards future full membership of SOLT. 

SOLT actively encouraged applications from groups historically underrepresented in its membership over its 114-year history. Applicants were asked to supply additional information about themselves during the application process. The selection criteria were later assessed on a points system, giving weight to marginalised and underrepresented candidates.  

The Associate Membership programme is designed to provide support to future leaders in the early to mid-stages of their careers. It is free and comes with access to various benefits aimed at fostering career progression and providing exposure to best working practices within the industry.  

Eleanor Lloyd, President of Society of London Theatre, commented:  

“At SOLT, we aim to nurture the next generation of leaders within the theatre industry and work to grow talent among communities that have traditionally been underrepresented in our sector. We are thrilled to extend a warm welcome to this new cohort of associate members.” 

Adrian Grant, producer, and director of Adrian Grant Productions, said: 

“Although I’ve been in and around the West End for many years, I’ve always felt like an outsider looking in. Now the door is open I hope I can get to know many more people working in our industry, gain further knowledge and create work that is inspiring and accessible to all.” 

Chinoyerem Odimba, Artistic Director and CEO of Tiata Fahodzi Theatre Company, said: 

This feels like a real opportunity to get to know the work SOLT do, and to be able to contribute to that. SOLT is an important voice in the changes that are being made in theatre, and how we speak to and about the industry. I am so excited to get to know the whole team and to bring some of that learning to the work I do. 

Chris Steward, producer with West End Musical Productions, said: 

I am honoured to be selected as an Associate Producer. I am a strong believer in being the change you wish to see and creating opportunities through enterprise and collaboration. I am looking forward to building relationships with other SOLT members, and developing a genuinely equitable and inclusive theatre community. 

Gabrielle Leadbeater, producer with Netflix and Roald Dahl Story Company,  said: 

SOLT membership puts me in dialogue with leading producers and venues to nurture the future of the theatre industry, and to use SOLT’s platform to represent how theatre which reaches, reflects and entertains broad and diverse audiences can be utterly transformative. 

Jasmyn Fisher-Ryner, producer and director of JFR Productions Ltd, said:  

“I applied to be part of the SOLT Associate member, so I could further my understanding of SOLT and learn from brilliant industry professionals! I’m excited to be part of a cohort of talented individuals and have the support and guidance from SOLT that will help further my understanding and development within the industry.” 

Maria Ines Olmedo, producer and director of María Inés Olmedo Projects (MIO Projects), said: 

“As I set myself to progress my career as an independent commercial producer, I believe being an associate member of SOLT will be a great opportunity to have the relevant access to best working practices, and I am looking forward to connecting with more people within the commercial sector, and becoming part of a community and system that I am sure will be of instrumental guidance.”