Therese is a very cool artist bringing a show about womens rights to choose when it comes to female reproductive rights. The work we make at Silent Faces is driven by the important issues they discuss, so we are always excited to talk to other theatre makers with the same thing in mind.
What drove you to make Mission Abort?
It simply felt crucial to explore the missing part of the discussion on female reproductive rights! While a lot of people are vocal about the legislation around abortion – and it is great that there is so much progress there – we very rarely hear about the woman behind the decision. Which, considering that one in three women in the U.K. choose to terminate pregnancies at some point in their lives, I find quite odd! So I wanted to create a show that addresses the purely personal perspective – without preaching or politicising. It was also super important for me to not do what abortion storylines most often seem to do in Hollywoody abortion storylines: victimising or criminalising the woman who has one.
Who is Mission Abort for?
In short, anyone who thinks women’s stories are important and want to see an honest, empowered and occasionally pretty funny show (I mean, people tell me it’s funny – and I have lots of fun performing it!) Also, when I did the play in Edinburgh last year, and while I’ve been performing at The Space throughout January, one of the really beautiful things is that so many men who have seen it have genuinely really loved it and claimed to learn a lot from it. This, to me, is wonderful as it goes to show that female reproductive rights really aren’t just a “women’s issue” (a term that I hate!). And, deciding over one’s body and when to assume responsibility of parenthood should be a human right and something we all care about.
If you had to make a new show, what CURRENT news story would you like to make a show about?
I mean, at this very moment it’s difficult not to say the #MeToo movement!! Even though it is perhaps a bit unimaginative, as I am sure there will be lots of work about this in the coming while – but probably all needed. Hm. Might be time for a short scribble-some-thoughts-in-a-notebook break now…
What theatre ‘turn offs’ do you have?
Grasping the air during big emotional moments in musicals – unless done with complete irony (or appears motivated by a genuine desire to catch a cloud).
What was the last show that moved you to action?
Such a good question! And so difficult to answer! Have seen so many really important pieces of work lately. I think theatre and live art in general is one of my “top inspiring things” though, and just seeing something really powerful that forces me to question and consider choices I make - and how I can do better in contributing to the world - kind of moves me to everyday kind of action.
What shows at VAULT are you looking forward to?
Apart from all the unexpected shows I’m hoping to stumble across just by turning up at a certain time or a certain day, I am excited to see for example Glitter Punch, For A Black Girl, The Vagina Dialogues, Double Infemnity and The People’s Rock. Also hoping to catch work Beth Vyse’s and Bridget Christie’s work in progress performances. Oh, and of course Follow Suit and A Clown Show About Rain..! Aaaah, so many exciting shows – I know I’ve forgotten at least five I’m hoping to see...
You can see Mission Abort from 7-11 Feb at VAULT Festival!