More archive fun!
All images by Jacky Fleming
I'm collaborating with Scary Little Girls for the fourth season of their Salon de la Vie project - on everything you didn’t know about the suffragettes and their creative campaigning! We’ll combine recorded extracts, songs, special guests and live shows in this season to celebrate the wild, wonderful, wise and witty women of the first wave.
Join us for…
June 2nd, Votes for Children!
A look at the young people who supported the suffrage movement and found their own voice in the process.
June 16th, Birds of a Feather.
We will hear about plans to fill Parliament with suffragette parrots, talk about how the movement campaigned not just for votes for women but to end vivisection, and explore the links between vegetarianism and suffrage.
June 30th, Nobody Expects the Suffragettes!
Site specific, pop up and random acts of activism all characterised the creative shenanigans of suffragists in the theatre and entertainment industries, and in this Salon we celebrate some of the most unexpected!
July 14th, The Woman’s Theatre.
Here we will look at the way suffrage campaigners imagined a theatre they could be part of, including female producers and playwrights, crèches, and an end to the casting couch… so much to admire and yet to apply to the modern mainstream…
July 28th, Taking the Stage!
Our all live season finale bringing the work of Elizabeth Robins, Evelyn Glover and Cicely Hamilton to life before your very eyes! Expect digital mayhem, songs, short scenes and feminist fun for all! Tickets for this £5, the only Salon of the season we’re charging for and we are super grateful for your support!
About Salon de la Vie
Now coming up to its fourth season, Salon de la Vie is our fortnightly series of 15 – 20 minute extravaganzas of songs, storytelling, merriment and conversation. Focusing each time on an awe-inspiring, remarkable and brave human from the world of film, music, literature and history, and drawing parallels with the achievements of activists today, we celebrate how people positively embody the change they want to see in the world, for themselves and for others.
My second edited collection with Methuen Drama is being published on the 2nd July! It contains twelve pieces in all - a wide variety of material written by female and male suffragist writers between 1908-1914.
Spanning different styles and genres, the pieces explore many issues that interested feminist and suffragist campaigners such as the value of women's work, domestic and economic inequality, visibility in public space, direct action and its consequences, sexual double standards, and the influence of the media on public opinion. This collection builds on my first volume of plays, published in 2013. If you get both you will have an impressive collection of playable, accessible and fascinating plays that speak to us directly about how the suffrage movement represented itself on the stage and through the medium of performance.
Here's a little bit about each of the plays to whet your appetites!
It's been a couple of months now since my job at Parliament finished - and I've been meaning to write about some of the creative outputs of my time as part of the Vote 100 team. I was part of an AHRC funded project called 'What Difference Did the War Make? World War One and Votes for Women' run by the University of Lincoln and UK Parliament Vote 100 alongside the University of Plymouth. The project outputs included three panel events in Lincoln, Plymouth and London discussing not only the project topic but the work and legacy of past and present female Members of Parliament, alongside workshops for young people, and an exhibition in Parliament and online. You can see that exhibition here: www.parliament.uk
I'm not going to talk about those outputs in this blog post though. Instead this is a brief introduction to some of the other outputs involving project research that happened over the course of my year there - outputs I'm really excited about and that reached out to different audiences in different spaces. There's music, games, theatre, and sweets!
I wrote a blog post about suffrage plays for the Vote 100 project - you can read it here. Whilst doing it, I began to compile a list of all the professional performances of suffrage plays, old and new, since 2008... and I'd like you to check yours or one you attended or one that you are putting on next year is on the list, and if not, comment on this post so I can add it to the list!
I am including:
At the moment I am not including projects or performances that have only taken place in formal education institutions, so schools, colleges and universities... unless those performances were/are open to the public or are made available to the public online through video, audio or other online dissemination.
Please don't be cross if yours is not there - comment and I will add it to the list. This first list is purely made up of projects and performances I remember being in, putting on, attending or knowing about so is limited by those factors.
Please comment and let's make it a much better and more inclusive and more extensive list!
In groups of ten to fifteen at a time, audiences will set off on a specially prepared route through Covent Garden starting from the historic Theatre Royal Drury Lane. At intervals throughout the route, actors and actresses begin their performances as the groups draw near, engaging audience members in comic and moving moments from the struggle for Votes for Women with pieces both inspired by and directly from the plays and experiences of the Actresses’ Franchise League…
Audiences will discover theatrical Suffragette secrets they never knew Theatre Land had been keeping!
Thoughts, reflections, bits of research