“The real thing I struggle with is other people’s perceptions”: the experiences of autistic performing arts professionals and attitudes of performing arts employers in the UK

Eleanor Buckley*, Elizabeth Pellicano, Anna Remington

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

This research examined in-depth the employment experiences of autistic performing arts professionals and the attitudes and adjustments of performing arts employers. We interviewed 18 autistic performing arts professionals and 19 performing arts employers. Autistic performing arts professionals described facing challenges in the workplace. Some autistic professionals had access to support, but the majority felt that there was not enough available and highlighted many ways in which they could be better supported. Performing arts employers varied in their experiences of working with autistic people, many had limited knowledge about autism-specific support or relied on other professionals to provide it. These findings shed light on current unmet support needs of autistic performing arts professionals, and provide key recommendations for research and practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45–59
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Volume51
Issue number1
Early online date30 Apr 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2020. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

Keywords

  • autism
  • employment
  • employers
  • support
  • disclosure
  • arts

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