Plays for Today by Women
Edited by Rebecca Gillieron & Cheryl Robson
- A wide-ranging collection of plays by women dealing with contemporary subjects such as child abuse, recession, war, poverty and the complexity of modern women’s lives.
- Many roles for women and girls; suitable for study for performance or as part of courses in Women’s Studies or Feminist Theatre Studies.
- All the plays have been produced and performed in the UK to acclaim.
“The expanse of subjects this short collection covers shows that women are not just writing about the kitchen sink, the claim so often levelled. this collection (provides) a snapshot of an exciting time for female writers” @17percent
Yours Abundantly, From Zimbabwe by Gillian Plowman: a middle-aged woman decides to leave her comfy life in the UK and work in a school in Zimbabwe.
From The Mouths Of Mothers by Amanda Stuart Fisher: a verbatim drama detailing the distressing stories of mothers who learned that their child has been abused.
Welcome To Ramallah by Sonja Linden and Adah Kay: two Jewish sisters are forced to confront the reality of what their forefathers have done to the Palestinians.
Sweet Cider by Em Hussain: In a rundown park, two teenage runaways Tazeem and Nosheen hang out, chatting to the boys and an old bag lady, trying to reconcile being British with their Pakistani cultural traditions.
The Awkward Squad by Karen Young: a three-generational drama involving Northern women who are trying to live and work in recessionary Britain.
For A Button by Rachel Barnett: comic two hander about two friends and the lengths one will go to, to remain best friends.
About the editors
Cheryl Robson is an award-winning playwright and publisher who founded Aurora Metro Books over 20 years ago to develop and publish new writers in drama and fiction. She also established The Virginia Prize for Fiction in 2009 to promote emerging women novelists. Previously, she worked for the BBC, ran a theatre company and taught in higher education.
Rebecca Gillieron is an editor and musician with various releases on independent labels in the US and UK. Keen to raise the profile of women and the arts, she has worked in publishing for fifteen years moving from Virgin and Penguin Books into independent publishing via The Womens Press, Marion Boyars and now Aurora Metro Books.
About the authors
Gillian Plowman won the Verity Bargate Award in 1988 with Me and My Friend, a poignantly funny play about the release of four patients from a psychiatric hospital into the community. It was first produced at the Soho Poly Theatre in 1990 and at the Chichester Festival Theatre in 1992. Since then she has written prolifically for radio, film and theatre.
Yours Abundantly, From Zimbabwe, directed by Annie Castledine and Ben Evans, was produced at the Oval House Theatre, London, during Black History Month, October 2008. Boniface and Me, a radio version of Yours Abundantly, From Zimbabwe, was broadcast in 2007. It was the first in a trilogy of plays about Africa by the author which featured Dame Harriet Walter.
Amanda Stuart-Fisher is a Senior Lecturer at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. She has written and directed several plays including Who Will Carry The Word? an adaptation of Charlotte Delbo’s play and The Adventures of the Big Bad Wolfy, a devised play which was performed at The Hall for Cornwall.
Amanda is the author of several articles and chapters in books and has published in journals such as TDR, Studies in Theatre and Performance and Performance Research.
She lives in south-west London with her husband and two children.
Sonja Linden born in London to German refugee parents, Sonja is a theatre producer and writer whose plays have been produced on radio and on stage throughout the UK and the United States. She is the founding artistic director of Visible Theatre Ensemble, having previously founded iceandfire theatre (www.iceandfire.co.uk), a company that explores human rights through performance (nominated for a Liberty award in 2010). Sonja’s plays for iceandfire include: On A Clear Day You Can See Dover (Wilton’s Music Hall, Crucible Theatre, Sheffield and UK national tour), Welcome to Ramallah, co-written with Adah Kay, and its companion piece, Palestine Monologues, (Arcola Theatre, York Theatre Royal, Compass Theatre, San Diego); Crocodile Seeking Refuge (Lyric Hammersmith, UK national tour), Asylum Dialogues (Tricycle Theatre and UK national tour), I Have Before Me a Remarkable Document Given to Me by a Young Lady from Rwanda (Finborough Theatre, UK and USA tours, BBC World Service Radio), and Asylum Monologues (UK national tour). Previous work includes: The Strange Passenger (Paines Plough, Battersea Arts Centre and UK National Tour); The Jewish Daughter, sequel to Brecht’s The Jewish Wife (New End Theatre); Call Me Judas (Paines Plough, Finborough Theatre) and Present Continuous (Edinburgh Festival, Fringe First, BBC Radio 4).
Adah Kay is a social scientist, academic and writer. Between 2002-6 she lived and worked in Ramallah and with two colleagues wrote Stolen Youth (Pluto Press, 2004) about Palestinian children imprisoned by the Israeli military. She continues to write about Palestinian issues, both in the West Bank which she continues to visit, and in the UK. She recently co- wrote with Nadia Abu Zahra Unfree in Palestine (Pluto Press 2013) which is about identity documentation and movement restrictions and the two are currently working on a book about the right to family life and divided families. Her experience and writing about life under occupation in Palestine inspired her collaboration with playwright Sonja Linden on Welcome to Ramallah, with whom she continues to work in the Visible Theatre Ensemble.
Emteaz Hussain is currently writing her second play Blood: The Ballad of Caneze and Sully with Tamasha Theatre and her first radio play Yapping with BBC Radio.
She has recently completed the Studio Group at The Royal Court Theatre. She works extensively as a workshop practitioner devising original, contemporary drama with young people in both statutory and voluntary settings, specialising in Pupil Referral units.
As a spoken word artist, she has performed both nationally and internationally, and toured as a backing poet with the Benjamin Zephaniah Band.
Her debut play Sweet Cider was produced by Tamasha at the Arcola Theatre in November 2008, garnering four-star reviews from Time Out and Whatsonstage.
Karin Young’s plays include Buffalo Girls and Here I Come for Live Theatre Co in Newcastle. Hatched Matched and Dispatched (with Gez Casey), Divvy Day For Doreen and Swinging Sisters for Living Memory Theatre Co in Newcastle.
Her TV work includes: Children’s Ward for ITV and Little Richard Wrecked My Marriage for Channel 4. For fifteen years she’s been a proud member of the Emmerdale Writing Team.
Rachel’s Barnett work has been performed at theatres in the UK and abroad, including The Royal Court, Theatre 503, and The Arcola Theatre, also at Chichester Festival Theatre, Royal and Derngate, Latitude Festival, Manhattan Theatre Source in New York, Live Girls in Seattle, Key City Public Theatre in Washington and Auroville in India. Following a BA in English Literature from Cardiff University and an MA in Writing for Performance from Central School of Speech and Drama, she has specialised in working with young people, people with disabilities and community groups. Rachel shares her time between playwriting, producing, workshop leading, lecturing, copywriting, company management, fundraising, project management and consultancy. Writing projects to date include original work, adaptations, translations, theatre in education projects, pieces for young audiences and young performers, and dramaturgy of collaborative devised work.