The Bechdel test has been used for 30 years in film criticism, and since 2015 has been applied to stage shows by Bechdel Theatre, a project which highlights shows that represent women by asking three questions:
Are there 2 women on stage?
Do they talk to each other?
About something other than a man?
… and then promoting shows that can answer YES to all three questions.
At Edinburgh Fringe 2016, Bechdel Theatre has been placing stickers on posters to endorse shows that pass the Bechdel test (similar to ‘star ratings’ but with no indication of subjective opinion: only the fact that the show has women talking about something that’s not men!). Keep your eye out if you’re looking at a wall of flyers and want to choose something where women aren’t completely absent.
If you see this logo you can be sure that women are being represented:
For up-to-date tweets about Bechdel test passing shows, in Edinburgh and beyond, follow on Twitter @BechdelTheatre, but if you’re planning your festival calendar and want some solid advice on which shows pass the test to help you cram your month with women on stage, look no further than this (non-comprehensive) list of 23 Edinburgh Fringe shows that ace the Bechdel test (plus 9 Bechdel-friendly solo shows) http://bechdeltheatre.
Beth Watson of Bechdel Theatre is out and about at the Fringe looking for shows that pass the test. If you’d like to know more here is an article from the Stage (October 2015)
And here is our interview with Beth: