How does theatre censorship exist today and what influence does it have on the creativity of contemporary performance artists in Scotland today?
(2016) How does theatre censorship exist today and what influence does it have on the creativity of contemporary performance artists in Scotland today?, no. 54.
Performance has always pushed form, boundaries and challenged beliefs. In Great Britain statutory censorship was first introduced in 1737, previously exercised under the Royal Prerogative. The Lord Chamberlain's authority over licensing was later strengthened by the Theatres Act of 1843 and continued until repealed in 1968, despite great opposition. Although performances no longer require a license before they can be performed, pressures such as social and political factors can be argued to exist as modern forms of censorship.This study explores the existence and effect of theatre censorship in Scotland today, in particular relation to contemporary performance. In order to do this, research was conducted through the analysis of interviews with three working artists. This process permitted the similarities and differences in the artists' perceptions and opinions to be explored, and are presented within this study. The participants were asked about their own creative process, censorship and the industry as a whole. The responses from the artists confirm the unclear artistic boundaries and the ambiguous nature of censorship, offering many examples of the guises it inhabits. The study concludes that censorship does still exist to an extent, but is not always recognised as such.