Fantastic showcase of plays on the theme of art

Many thanks to all involved in the “She Writes” showcase – particularly to 17Percent founder Sam Hall and to Director Sarah Davies and our wonderful actors Sue Blakesley, Chyna Graham and Sioned Jones for all their hard work on ‘My Bloody Laundrette’.

17percent

Tonight we showcased 7 plays that have all responded to our theme of ‘What is art?’ in different ways.

Sally Whyte’s play ‘Joined at the hip’ was written in response to a painting by Frida Kahlo ‘The Two Fridas’. Maggie Drury’s ‘The arrangement’, Karen Bartholomew’s ‘Who knows art?’ and my own play ‘Graf’ were all musings on the question of what exactly art is, and who has the right to define it.

‘My Bloody Laundrette’ by Ali Kemp and Deborah Klayman interpreted the theme in a magical realist way – Princess Leia, Mona Lisa and Juliet Capulet, all women created by men, who decide to give themselves and each other a voice.

Sioned Jones’ ‘Drawing a blank’ and ‘Pink Lady’ by Tracy Harris were both about relationships. But with unexpected twists and shown from different angles.

One of the criticisms as to why theatres won’t commission work by women is that…

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About Deborah Klayman

Deborah is an actress, musician, voice artist and writer based in the UK. She trained at the University of Northumbria, where she gained a 1st Class BA (Hons) in Performance, and at Drama Studio London (Postgraduate Diploma in Acting). Deborah has performed in the UK and overseas in a variety of roles which include Emilia in 'Othello' and Juliana Tesman in 'Hedda Gabler' in rep, Regan in 'King Lear', Mrs Pugh/Polly Garter in 'Under Milk Wood' and Fluellen/Alice in Henry V. An accomplished cellist and singer, the projects she undertakes frequently utilise her musical talents. Film and TV roles include: Geordie in a TV pilot for 'Dead Man's Cardy', Reporter in 'Mission London', Sarah in 'For Better or Worse', and Nurse Tremaine in 'Another Day. Deborah is also a successful voice artist, recording projects for companies such as M&C Saatchi/Silverfish Media, BP, Oxford University Press and The Scottish Sunday Express. Deborah is a talented writer, penning plays and screenplays primarily on issues surrounding social justice. Her first play, 'Janetarium', was one of three selected through the Traverse Theatre's Class Act project and was subsequently staged at the Traverse and published in Theatre Scotland Magazine. She later joined the theatre's Young Writers Group, and continued to write and devise plays throughout her university and drama school training. In 2005, she co-authored "Eve & Lilith" with Jessica Martenson which was produced at that year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe. In 2011, Deborah co-founded Whoop 'n' Wail Theatre Company with friend, collaborator and writing partner Ali Kemp. Their debut production, 'eXclusion', was produced in association with UK charity Women In Prison and toured to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, London's Waterloo East Theatre, and Bracknell's South Hill Park Arts Centre. Their latest venture, "Whoop 'n' Wail Represents...", showcases new writing that puts gender equality centre stage, working with even numbers of female and male writers and directors to stage plays that pass the Bechdel Test. Deborah was one of the Traverse Theatre's 'Traverse Fifty' (a year-long writing attachment in 2013), and Whoop 'n' Wail's play 'My Bloody Laundrette' recently won the Cambridge University Press "Channel the Bard" competition. View all posts by Deborah Klayman

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