Refuge Woman Wins 'Innovation of the Year' @ Drum Online Media Awards 2019!
Filled with utter shock and so much gratitude - my play Refuge Woman has won an award!
I initially wrote Refuge Woman as a 15 minute work in progress monologue to perform at a ‘scratch’ night at Battersea Arts Centre in October 2017.
It was a case of right place, right time and a fucking- lucky- dash- of- working- class- nepotism because in the audience that night was an old school friend of mine - Conrad Murray - who had since made a name for himself as one of theatres most innovative directors. And. The award winning journalist/podcaster Maeve McClenaghan who I’d met just a few months earlier outside of the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea council offices when she came to interview me as I attempted a misguided revolution*** after the ceiling of the women’s refuge my daughter and I were living in crashed on our heads.
I’d started performing stand-up comedy in early 2017 and was getting used to dying onstage but this performance went down surprisingly well ( to an audience of around 30- mainly consisting of other comedians and artists on the bill!) and in the bar afterwards Maeve, Conrad and I had hatched a plan for me to extend the monologue into a 1 hour play so we could take it on tour to areas in the UK most affected by government cuts to domestic violence services.
By July 2018 the show was fully formed and we were on the road. We took it around the UK, raised money for women’s refuges, revealed the devastating affects of government cuts and finished off with a week long sell out run at Camden People’s Theatre in November 2018.
And now Refuge Woman is an award winning show! We won ‘Innovation of the Year’ at the Drum Online Media Awards 2019!
Thank you so much to Maeve McClenaghan and ALL at the Bureau of Investigative Journalism for taking a chance on a struggling homeless playwright by agreeing to produce the show, to Conrad Murray for being the most brilliant director and to all those who came out to see the play, donated towards the refuges we worked with and helped us raise awareness along the way. Thank you. x
*** Misguided revolution - Back in August 2017 in the aftermath of the ceiling collapse I was standing outside the RBKC building handing out my crudely handmade flyers that read ‘Not A Tory’ and telling passers by that austerity had almost killed us 7 women and six children living in the refuge - nothing really changed and austerity continues...