Arts: The fierce and fabulous her-story of theatre
Telling the ‘her-story’ of British working-class entertainment from immigrant, queer, activist and occult perspectives, SHOWWOMEN is booking now
Delve into the daring, thrilling and downright dangerous domain of female performers through the centuries in new touring work SHOWWOMEN.
Created by Olivier Award-winning performance maker Marisa Carnesky, the spectacular piece of theatre at Cambridge Junction ponders why the word ‘showwomen’ isn’t in existence, yet showman is. And then seeks to redress this by telling the untold ‘herstory’ of British working-class entertainment from immigrant, queer, activist and occult perspectives.
Marisa and her fearless co-performers - Fancy Chance, Livia Kojo Alour and Lucifire - pay homage to four unusual showwomen of past centuries. There’s 1940s' body magic star Koringa, 1930s' pioneer clown Lulu Adams, 1920s' female daredevil Marjorie Dare and 1880s' teeth hanging aerialist superstar Miss La La.
Seeking to understand why and how women perform dangerous and taboo acts, SHOWWOMEN explores the legacy of forgotten and marginalised diverse British entertainers, mixing live action and in-depth interviews with archival footage an death-defying stunts.
“Expect witchy collective going-ons in full leopard print, naked crocodile women scaling walls, ladders of swords, live hair hanging, never ending pom poms and ectoplasmic clowns,” reads the show blurb.
A fantastic feminist rewrite which is sure to change the way you think about women in showbusiness, forever.
See SHOWWOMEN at Cambridge Junction May 17-18. More at junction.co.uk
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More by this authorLouise Cummings