Parents In Performing Arts

Abby Warren Photography

Welcome to PiPA

PiPA’s vision is of a performing arts sector that is effectively inclusive of the parent and carer workforce.

Our mission is to promote best practice employment and support for parents and carers in the performing arts sector through data collection, research, lobbying and working collaboratively to implement the PIPA Best Practice Charter and strategies for change.

PiPA enables and empowers parents, carers and employers to achieve sustainable change in attitudes and practices in order to attract, support and retain a more diverse and flexible workforce. By working in partnership we raise awareness, find creative solutions and promote best practice in the UK Performing Arts.

“Access to work for all, including carers and parents, is crucial to the long term sustainability of the performing arts. I’m excited to be exploring with PiPA how we can remove existing barriers that those with caring responsibilities may have faced, and help shape new working practices at the National Theatre.”

Rufus Norris, Artistic Director, National Theatre


In order to achieve long term, sustainable change it is vital that the work of PiPA is industry -led. To increase business resilience,  the performing arts sector must proactively explore new ways of working to empower the workforce to reach its full potential, Working in partnership with organisations, employers and individuals to identify barriers to work for those with caring commitments, PiPA supports the development and implementation of long term creative strategies to improve access to work.

Caring responsibilities are one of the biggest drivers of the gender pay gap. Parents and carers, the majority of whom are women, are away from the workplace for a prolonged period of time and often work part-time on return. This can have long term repercussions for career progression, as identified by PiPA’s Balancing Act research. Family friendly working practices are beneficial not just for carers and parents but for all, as well as future proofing businesses.

Read more about Government guidelines to reduce the gender pay gap here.


PiPA is a limited, not-for-profit company, forming strategic partnerships with leading UK performing arts organisations. A collaborative network of performing arts organisations, industry bodies and unions, Strategic Partners are committed to supporting PiPA’s mission and include:

Actors’ Children’s Trust, Association of British Orchestras, BASCA, BECTU, Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Dancers’ Career Development,  Dance Professionals Fund, Dance Umbrella, Donmar Warehouse, English National Ballet, English National Opera, English Touring Theatre, Equity, Family Arts Campaign, Featured Artists Coalition, Federation of Scottish Theatre, Help Musicians, Hull Truck Theatre, ITC, Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse, LW Theatres, Lyric Hammersmith, Mercury Theatre Colchester, Musicians Union, National Theatre, National Theatre of Scotland, Northern Ballet, Nottingham Playhouse, One Dance UK, Opera North, Out of Joint, Ovalhouse Theatre, Rambert, Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh, Royal Opera House, Royal Shakespeare Company, Sadler’s Wells, Scottish Opera, Shakespeare’s Globe, Sheffield Theatres, Society of London Theatre, Sonia Friedman Productions, Spotlight, Stage Directors UK, Stage Management Association, The Old Vic Theatre, UK Music, UK Theatre and Writers’ Guild GB.


“We are delighted to join our new partners PiPA in their fight to create change throughout Performing Arts and honoured to help them expand into the music industry as they grow their mission across all Performing Arts.

Their vital work tackling the inequalities confronting parents and carers in the industry is a cause we care deeply about and look forward to joining forces with the campaign. ” 

Natalie Williams, Head of Research, UK Music

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Help and Support

PiPA has called for performing arts organisations and the government to consider the medium term needs and risks posed to parents and carers in the sector’s workforce in light of the Coronavirus pandemic. To access our dedicated resources, updates and for further guidance on where to find support...