The Tricycle Theatre Presents WOMEN, POWER AND POLITICS, Previews 6/4

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The Tricycle Theatre Presents WOMEN, POWER AND POLITICS, Previews 6/4

The Tricycle Theatre will present Women, Power and Politics, a season opening immediately after the general election, exploring the history and current role of women in politics in Great Britain through twelve different plays, a film festival, curtain raisers (in conjunction with the National Theatre Studio) and an exhibition in the Tricycle's Gallery. Women, Power and Politics will preview from 4 June, with press performances at 3pm and 7pm on 11 June, and runs until 17 July 2010. Designs are by Rosa Maggiora, lighting is by Matthew Eagland and sound by Tom Lishman. Full casting will be announced shortly.

Directed by Indhu Rubasingham with Associate Director Amy Hodge, Women, Power and Politics presents the world premieres of plays by Bola Agbaje, Moira Buffini, Zinnie Harris, Sam Holcroft, Marie Jones, Lucy Kirkwood, Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Sue Townsend and Joy Wilkinson, as well as verbatim monologues, edited by Gillian Slovo from interviews that she has conducted with politicians including Oona King, Edwina Currie, Clare Short, Ann Widdecombe, Chloe Smith, Jacqui Smith and Baronesses Pauline Neville-Jones and Shirley Williams. In addition the season will include plays by young playwrights Lydia Adetunji, Abbie Spallen and David Watson. Women, Power and Politics is produced by Indhu Rubasingham and the Tricycle's Artistic Director Nicolas Kent.

The season will be presented in two parts - one entitled Then, examining the historical aspects of women and politics; the other entitled Now, with a more contemporary focus. The two parts will be performed on alternate evenings, with an opportunity to see parts 1 and 2 on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Today, 17 March 2010, Indhu Rubasingham, Director, Women, Power and Politics, said: "In 2010 women make up 19% of MPs. Post election, how much will have changed? It is 92 years since women were first permitted to stand for Parliament and currently Britain has the smallest percentage of women in government of all European counties.

Women are often referred to as a minority in political terms, but in fact constitute 52% of the population in this country. Women, Power and Politics will raise questions about the complexity of women and political power in Great Britain."

THEN

The Lioness by Rebecca Lenkiewicz

Elizabeth I described herself as Queen, King and Prince, thriving in a male world and saving the country from debt and wars. Self proclaimed wife and mother to England, her virgin status was part of her myth as she consistently refused marriage citing herself as already taken. In The Lioness we see Elizabeth as both a woman and a leader and follow her encounters with two men, John Knox, the ultimate misogynist and Essex, her favourite.

Rebecca Lenkiewicz is currently under commission to the National Theatre and Manhattan Theatre Club, New York. Her play, Her Naked Skin, directed by Howard Davies, premiered at the National Theatre in 2008, the first play to be performed on the Olivier stage by a living female playwright. The Night Season, also presented at the National Theatre won her the Critics Circle Most Promising Playwright Award in 2004. Her other plays includes Soho - A Tale of Table Dancers for the Arcola Theatre, Shoreditch Madonna for Soho Theatre, Blue Moon Over Poplar for the National Youth Theatre/Soho Theatre, The Soldier's Tale for the Old Vic, An Enemy of the People for the Arcola Theatre and Faeries for the Royal Opera House. Lenkiewicz's new version of Ibsen's Ghosts was presented at the Arcola Theatre in 2009.

The Milliner And The Weaver by Marie Jones

Henrietta, from Belfast and Elspeth, from Dublin are unlikely comrades. The Suffragette movement binds them together but as the question of Home Rule divides Ireland, will national politics tear them apart?

Marie Jones is a BAFTA award-winning Irish writer and has written extensively for stage and television. Her play Stones in His Pockets premiered at the Tricycle before transferring to the West End, on Broadway and in thirty countries worldwide, winning numerous awards including the Laurence Olivier and Evening Standard awards for Best Comedy. Her other writing credits include Women on the Verge of HRT and A Night In November, the latter of which also ran at the Tricycle before it opened in the West End. She received the John Hewitt Award for outstanding contribution to culture, tradition and the arts in Northern Ireland and was awarded an OBE in 2002.

Battle of the Bags by Moira Buffini

For over a decade Margaret Thatcher met the Queen for a weekly audience. With all her previous Prime Ministers, the Queen enjoyed a fairly informal relationship but with Mrs Thatcher, things were different. Battle of the Bags speculates on the relationship between these two very powerful and private women.

Moira Buffini's 1997 play Gabriel was performed at the Soho Theatre, winning the LWT Plays on Stage and Meyer Whitworth awards. Her 1999 play Silence, commissioned by the National Theatre Studio, earned her the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. Dinner, which premiered at the National Theatre in 2003, subsequently transferred to the West End, winning a Laurence Olivier award nomination for Best Comedy. Her other writing credits include Dying For It a new adaptation of Nikolai Erdman's satirical comedy The Suicide and Marianne Dreams an adaptation of Catherine Storr's classic novel, both for The Almeida Theatre. Buffini is also a prolific screenwriter. She has written an adaptation of Jane Eyre for BBC Films and Ruby Films.

Bloody Wimmin by Lucy Kirkwood

The protests at Greenham Common were a political landmark of the eighties. How much did Greenham impact the fight for nuclear disarmament, the progress of the women's movement and the culture of protest itself? What is the legacy of Greenham Common?...‘It's very easy to laugh at passion'.

Lucy Kirkwood is under commission to the Manhattan Theatre Club and is working with Headlong Theatre. She was resident writer at Clean Break for two years and her play for them, It Felt Empty When The Heart Went At First But It Is Alright Now premiered at the Arcola in 2009, and was nominated for the Evening Standard Most Promising Playwright Award and the Susan Smith Blackburn Award. Kirkwood's play Tinderbox was produced by the Bush Theatre in April 2008 and Hedda, her adaptation of Ibsen's Hedda Gabler, was produced by the Gate Theatre later that year. For television she has written for Skins and is currently developing an original TV series for Kudos and a new screenplay for Film4/Ruby Films.

NOW

Acting Leader by Joy Wilkinson

After the sudden death of John Smith, Margaret Beckett finds herself hurled into the position of Acting Leader of the Opposition and the sole female candidate in the race to lead the party. She embarks on her campaign with the support of Clare Short in the contest that saw the birth of New Labour.

Joy Wilkinson's play Now Is The Time opened at the Tricycle last year as part of the The Great Game: Afghanistan. Her other writing credits include Fair for Finborough Theatre and the Trafalgar Studios and The Aquatic Ape for the Edinburgh Festival and Worship Ensemble Theater in New York. She recently completed an attachment at the National Theatre Studio and is writing a new play for the Liverpool Everyman/Playhouse. She has dramatised numerous Agatha Christie novels for BBC Radio 4. She was a graduate of the BBC's inaugural Writer's Academy and is now a lead writer on Doctors.

Playing The Game by Bola Agbaje

Election time. The Student's Association needs a new President and Akousa's achingly cool flatmates are certain she is perfect for the position. But how can they persuade her and how much is she willing to compromise?

Bola Agbaje's play Detaining Justice opened at the Tricycle at the end of last year as part of the theatre's Not Black And White season. Her writing credits include her debut play Gone Too Far! which opened at the Royal Court in 2007 for which she was nominated for the Evening Standard Most Promising Playwright Award and won the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement. In 2008 her second play, In Time, opened the Tiata Delights season at The Almeida Theatre. She wrote Anything You Can Do for Soho Theatre and her play Off The Endz has recently opened at the Royal Court Downstairs.

The Panel by Zinnie Harris

The last candidate has just left the room and the door is shut. The clock is ticking, there's a train to catch, and the panel must decide who to appoint. But what is really motivating them and will their own agendas prevail?

Zinnie Harris' writing credits include Fall for the Traverse Theatre, Julie for the National Theatre of Scotland, Midwinter and Solstice both for the Royal Shakespeare Company, Nightingale and Chase for the Royal Court, Further Than The Furthest Thing for the National Theatre/Tron Theatre - which won the Peggy Ramsay Playwrighting Award and the John Whiting Award - and By Many Wounds for Hampstead Theatre. She also wrote a new version of Ibsen's A Doll's House for the Donmar Warehouse. She has written two 90 minute dramas for Channel 4, Born With Two Mothers and Richard Is My Boyfriend and episodes for the BBC1/Kudos Drama series Spooks. Her directing credits include Julie for the National Theatre of Scotland, Solstice and Midwinter both for the RSC, Gilt for 7:84, Dealer's Choice for Tron Theatre Company, Master of the House for BBC Radio 4 and Cracked which won the 2001 Edinburgh Fringe First Award. She was Writer in Residence at the RSC from 2000 - 2001.

Pink by Sam Holcroft

Two careers hang in the balance. Self-made millionaire Kim Keen is one of the most successful businesswomen in the country. As she prepares to launch her latest range on national television an unexpected visitor arrives in her dressing room with a different set of priorities to promote.

Sam Holcroft is currently under commission to the Traverse Theatre, Clean Break Theatre Company and Paines Plough. Vanya, Holcroft's radical adaptation of Uncle Vanya was produced at the Gate Theatre in 2009. Cockroach, co-produced by the National Theatre of Scotland and the Traverse Theatre was nominated for Best New Play by the 2008 Critics' Awards for Theatre in Scotland, and shortlisted for the John Whiting Award, 2009. Her short play Vogue premiered at The Royal Court Theatre as part of the Angry Now event and transferred to the 2006 Latitude Festival.

You, Me and Wii by Sue Townsend

In a council house in a small Leicestershire town, Vincent's skiing on the Wii, Sheila's feeding her granddaughter McKenzie, and Kerry's getting on with the ironing. None of them are planning on voting in the election, but when Selina Snow rings the doorbell to canvas, perhaps she can change their minds, or they can change hers.

Sue Townsend won the Thames Television Playwright Award for her debut play Womberang. Her subsequent writing for the stage includes The Great Celestial Cow, Ten Tiny Fingers, Nine Tiny Toes and most recently Are You Sitting Comfortably? She is best known for her series of books about Adrian Mole. The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13 ¾, Adrian Mole: The Wilderness Years and Adrian Mole: The Cappuccino Years have all been serialised for radio. Townsend also wrote the screenplays for the television adaptations and several of her books have been adapted for the stage including The Queen and I and A Play with Songs.

Curtain Raisers in Association with the National Theatre Studio

In association with the National Theatre Studio, the Tricycle is delighted to present three Curtain Raisers, written by emerging playwrights Lydia Adetunji, Abbie Spallen and David Watson. They will be performed in the Theatre On Mondays and Tuesdays from 6.45 - 7.15pm.

Director

Indhu Rubasingham most recently directed Disconnect at The Royal Court Theatre and her production of Lynn Nottage's Ruined will open at The Almeida Theatre next month. She was last at the Tricycle in 2009 directing Detaining Justice as part of the theatre's Not Black and White season and earlier in the year co-directed the acclaimed The Great Game: Afghanistan alongside Nicolas Kent. Other work for the Tricycle includes Fabulation, Starstruck and Darfur: How Long Is Never? Her other directing credits include Wuthering Heights for Birmingham Rep, Ramayana for the National Theatre and Birmingham Rep, Free Outgoing for the Royal Court, Pure Gold for Soho Theatre, Heartbreak House for Watford Palace Theatre, Yellowman and Anna In The Tropics at Hampstead Theatre, Romeo and Juliet for Chichester Festival Theatre, Tanika Gupta's Sugar Mummies, Roy Williams' Lift Off and Club Land all for the Royal Court and The Waiting Room by Tanika Gupta for the National Theatre.


Film Festival

In the Cinema: Women, Power & Politics Elsewhere 24 - 27 June

Running parallel to the theatre's focus on women in British politics, the Tricycle Cinema will screen a long weekend of international documentaries with discussions, debates and Q & A's celebrating politicised women and the grassroots campaigns that have united them in their struggles for change globally. The weekend will include a Sunday Shorts, a collaboration with Women in Film and Television, showcasing the best short-film submissions followed by discussions with the film-makers.

For further information on the film festival, please contact Holly Conneely, Film Programmer, on holly@tricycle.co.uk

Gallery Exhibition

In the Tricycle Gallery curatorial collective norn explore the theme of Women, Power and Politics through narratives of grass-roots activism from the Suffragettes to the present day. The exhibition will incorporate little-known archive material alongside photography and video works to celebrate women who have made a positive political impact over the last century whether inside or outside governmental frameworks. norn are London-based curators Ali MacGilp and Cassandra Needham.

ADDRESS Tricycle Theatre, 269 Kilburn High Road, London NW6 7JR

BOX OFFICE

Phone 020 7328 1000
In person 10am - 9pm Monday - Saturday, 2pm - 9pm on Sundays
On-line www.ticketweb.co.uk
Tickets £15 Single Part*
£25 Season Ticket*
* £10 for Wednesday matinees only
Early Bird Offer: £8.50 for Single Part tickets booked for performances
from 4 June - 10 June

Website: www.tricycle.co.uk Ch
Performances: For performance times please see the calendar below
Press Afternoon - 11 June: Then - 3pm, Now - 7pm

CAFÉ-BAR
The Tricycle Café (serving food) is open from 12pm to 8pm Mondays to Fridays and 10.30am - 8pm on Saturdays. The Tricycle Bar (serving drinks and snacks) is open from 12noon Mondays to Fridays & from 10.30am Saturdays & closes at 11pm Mondays to Saturdays. On Sundays the Bar is open 3pm - 9pm.
TRANSPORT

Tube: Kilburn (Jubilee Line)
Bus: 16, 31, 32, 98, 189, 206, 316, 328
Train: Brondesbury (London overground)

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