Taking the Stage – Day 3


From £10 - £12


18 October 2024

Taking the Stage is back supporting and celebrating women playwrights. This is our third festival and like our previous two festivals, we have an exciting lineup of new plays, discussions and talks.

7pm: Change of Engagement by Carly Halse
Julie D’Aubigny; master of swords, opera diva, bisexual badass…

In 17th Century France Madame D’Aubigny is infamous, known throughout the country for her conquests on both the duelling grounds, and in the boudoir. From cross-dressing, to clashing steel, Julie’s life was as dramatic in reality as her characters on stage. Exploring ideas of “liberté, égalité and sexualité,” the piece questions ideas of gender and sexual identity, whilst it attempts to uncover the truth of Julie’s tumultuous life.

7.30pm: The V-Word by Lisa Stenhouse
Vita Sackville-West was a prolific fiction writer, prize-winning poet, and gardener. She was also openly bisexual – loved several women and adored her also-bisexual husband, Harold. Committed to creating, from her over thirty-five books that mocked twenties societal norms to the beloved flora and fauna of Sissinghurst, Vita lived passionately. Yet her story remains forever defined by her affair with Virginia Woolf, and how it inspired Woolf’s Orlando. The V-Word challenges this reductive version of an extraordinary woman’s exceptional life and places Vita Sackville-West centre stage.

8.30pm: Persuasion by Chloe Wade
This brand-new, female-driven production of Jane Austen’s perennial classic text will explore gender roles, class and feminism from a distinctively northern perspective.  This work in progress extract will highlight the ‘gig theatre’ grounding of this production, with its strong focus on both narrative and music – with live folk music playing an integral part.

Q&A ‘Do we tell enough LGBTQ stories in theatre?’
Panel: Chloe Todd Fordham (Playwright and Chair), Carly Halse (Actor, Director and Playwright), Lisa Stenhouse (Actor and Playwright), Rosemary Hill (Actor, Director and Playwright)