After success at this year’s VAULT Festival, including rave reviews from Mates Laura Kressly and Shanine Salmon, Tatty Hennessy’s one-woman play A Hundred Words of Snow transfers to Trafalgar Studios for a limited season in the new year…
A Hundred Words of Snow will run at the West End’s Trafalgar Studios 2 from 5 to 30 March 2018, with a press night on 7 March. Playwright Tatty Hennessy‘s acclaimed coming of age story about grief, courage and polar bears returns after a run at VAULT Festival earlier this year and a UK tour.
This is a journey of epic proportions in every sense – through grief, adolescence and across the Arctic – as we follow Rory on her mission to get the ashes of her Arctic enthusiast dad to the North Pole, whilst discovering the full extent of the planet’s destruction and a lot about herself along the way.
As expectations of what women can and can’t do melt away at the same rate as the polar ice caps, Rory demonstrates with warmth and wit that polar exploration is no longer solely the domain of men, and that our planet is in desperate need of saving.
For the West End, Gemma Barnett reprises her performance as Rory, once again directed by Lucy Atkinson, one of The Stage‘s ‘top talents to watch from VAULT Festival 2018’. A Hundred Words of Snow won the Origins Award for outstanding work at VAULT Festival and the Arcola Theatre’s Heretic Voices Award for best new plays in monologue form.
Commenting on the transfer, Tatty Hennessy said:
“I’m excited to write a piece of serious drama focused on a teenage girl, one that takes her difficulties and desires seriously, especially at a time when the pressures and constraints on young women are so varied and complex. It also looks at our relationship with the planet, the delicate interconnectedness of nature and our impact on the earth, sadly all the more relevant in the wake of the UN’s stark and startling Climate Change Report.”
At the same time as her own play will be getting its West End premiere, around the corner from Trafalgar Studios at Jermyn Street Theatre, author Tatty Hennessey will take on directing duties on another new play, the world premiere of Maud Dromgoole‘s new play about fertility treatment pioneer Mary Barton who used her husband’s sperm to impregnate up to a thousand women. Mary’s Babies runs 20 March to 13 April 2019.
As part of the research process for A Hundred Words of Snow, renowned polar explorer Felicity Aston MBE has acted as a consultant. In 2012, Aston became the first woman to ski alone across Antarctica. It was a journey of 1744km that took 59 days to complete and which gave her a place in the book of Guinness World Records.
Amongst Aston’s many accolades, in 2015, the author, speaker, expedition leader and former Antarctic scientist was award The Queen’s Polar Medal – one of very few women to have received this special honour – and was appointed MBE for services to polar exploration.
A Hundred Words of Snow has lighting design by Lucy Adams, sound design by Mark Sutcliffe and is produced by Rebecca Gwyther for RJG Productions. The play was developed with the support of the Peggy Ramsey Foundation and Arts Council England.
A Hundred Words for Snow runs from 5 to 30 March 2019 at London’s Trafalgar Studios, 14 Whitehall, London SW1A 2DY. Performances are Mondays to Saturdays at 7.45pm, with Thursday and Saturday matinees at 3pm. Tickets are priced £15-£30. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE!
Production photography by Nick Rutter.
The following video dates from the production’s Vault Festival run in March 2018.
Tatty Hennessy (writer) is a graduate of the Royal Court and Lyric Young Writer’s Programmes. Her last play, a new adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen, was commissioned by Theatre N16 for Christmas and revived due to demand for Easter. Her previous play All That Lives was developed in association with Ovalhouse for a sold-out run in their studio space. She has written new work for Emerge, The Miniaturists and Little Pieces of Gold, and was commissioned by LAMDA to write an original play, Immaculate, for their students. Tatty was commissioned by the National Youth Theatre to write F Off, a play in response to social media, for a showcase at the Criterion in the West End. She is passionate about tackling big ideas through small lenses and telling stories with ambition and heart. Also in the new year, she directs
Gemma Barnett (performer) is a recent graduate from the Oxford School of Drama. Her recent credits include Matt Parvin’s Cousins (Soho Theatre), Ella Road’s Roosting (Park Theatre), Rehearsed reading of Camilla Whitehill’s Oil and Matter (Bunker Theatre) (Damsel Develops) and Josie-Dale Jone’s Flog (Camden People’s Theatre). Prior to training Gemma, as an associate artist of ThisEgg, co-wrote and performed Goggles, which won the NSDF Edinburgh Emerging Artist’s Award and is now being published by Oberon.
Lucy Jane Atkinson (director) has focused primarily on new writing, working across a wide range of projects, from intimate short plays to large-scale immersive experiences, musicals, and devised pieces, since graduating from LAMDA’s Post Graduate Director’s course in 2014. During this time, she has directed work by award-winning playwrights Camilla Whitehill, John O’Donovan, Tristan Bernays, Milly Thomas, Isley Lynn, and Susie Sillett, among others. Lucy was recently named one of The Stage’s Top Talents To Watch from VAULT Festival 2018.
Rebecca Gwyther (producer) is a freelance theatre director and producer and also runs RJG Productions. She trained on the StoneCrabs Young Directors Programme in 2015/2016 and has undertaken courses with Ambassadors Theatre Group and the National Theatre. Rebecca runs RJG Productions and is Producer for Old Sole Theatre Company. Over the past three years she has worked in press and marketing, for Summerhall and C venues at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and on a freelance basis in London. She often consults on Arts Council England applications, specifically for theatre and dance organisations, and has experience in fundraising through both public and private means, including private investment, crowdfunding, corporate sponsorship, trusts and partnerships.