Anne Horsburgh assesses drama commissioned to coincide with vote centenary
Staged by Attic Theatre company and directed by Jonathan Humphreys, this is a wittily written and wonderfully acted piece of theatre that should be experienced by residents of Merton and beyond.
Written by historical dramatist Beth Flintoff, the play tells the story of the activities of suffragettes living in Wimbledon, primarily Rose Lamartine Yates, superbly played by Valerie Antwi and Edith Begbie.
Emma Denby as Edith also tells the background story as we see her character develop from a rather sceptical consumer of cake at her first meeting to a fully fledged activist for the movement. Both women suffered at the hands of the police and both were imprisoned, Rose just before the play starts while Edith's incarceration and consequent hunger strike is central to the plot and, for me, was the most dramatic and moving scene.
The majority of the other parts are played by the versatile Ellen Atwell seamlessly moving from Bertha Lorsignol to Emily Davidson to Gervais, Edith's husband.
There is no division between cast and audience in terms of space and there is a lot of interaction, so that those of us watching were very much part of the action.
There is no doubt that the play is thought provoking and even resulted in a lively conversation, on the way home, with a couple of other women who had also been to the play.
As the play tours around the borough over the month, I would urge everyone to spend a couple of hours with these wonderful women. Full tour details are below.
By Anne Horsburgh
FULL TOUR SCHEDULE - October 2018
8th – 13th Wimbledon Library, SW19 7NB 7.30pm (except Saturday 13th, 1pm PWYL*) – Book tickets
15th Tara Arts, Earslfield, SW18 4ES, 7.30pm – Book through Tara Arts
23rd Durning Library, Kennington SE11 4HF, 7pm – Book tickets
24th Morden Library, SM4 5DX, 3pm (PWYL*) – Purchase tickets on the door
25th West Barnes Library, KT3 6JF, 3pm (PWYL*) – Purchase tickets on the door
26th Mitcham Library, CR4 2YR, 2.30pm (PWYL*) – Purchase tickets on the door
26th Balham Library, SW12 8QY, 7pm – Book tickets
27th Upper Norwood Library, SE19 1TJ, 7pm – Book tickets
28th Scout Hut Raynes Park, SW20 0SX, 2pm (PWYL*), 2pm - Book tickets
PWYL - PAY WHAT YOU LIKE. For these performances turn up and pay on the door.
Buy Tickets: Online attictheatrecompany.com.
October 12, 2018