In 2018’s centenary year of female suffrage, London’s Hoxton Hall presents “Female Parts”, its spring programme curated and produced by female artists from across the UK and internationally, placing women at the centre of a varied contemporary body of work.
The season opens with a Hoxton Hall world premiere production, Lil Warren‘s new all-female musical about rival gangs in Victorian London Oranges and Elephants, running from 20 January to 10 February 2018, with a press night on 23 January. The story follows Mary’s arrival in London and her introduction to gang life. How will she make her life expectancy of twenty-five when the two gangs are after owning her? Mary wants to be a Music Hall star. Nellie of The Elephants falls in love with Mary and they try to escape from thievery to the bright lights of Piccadilly.
Oranges and Elephants has book and lyrics by Lil Warren, with music and arrangements by Jo Collins. The premiere is directed by Susie McKenna and designed by Sara Perks. Casting for the actor-musician production has yet to be announced.
The season continues with Funny Women Awards: London Regional Final, and previous winner of the competition, Desiree Burch’s Unf*ckable; Vintage Misfits presents Afropean club night, Organic Nubians Club Night; and Patrizia Paolini returns with a one off, entirely female, special of Ms Paolini’s Phantasmagoria Cabaret. Also returning to Hoxton Hall isJumoke Fashola with Jazz Verse Jukebox and The Swing Time Dance Company’s SpringSwing.
The season culminates with a trio of short monologues, produced by Hoxton Hall, which will run through March, A Mother and A Woman Alone both by Franca Rame and Dario Fo, and OneNess Sankara’s The Immigrant. These three confessional plays explore what it is to be a wife, mother and immigrant.
Artistic Director of Hoxton Hall, Karena Johnson commented:
“Female Parts is a season of curated and produced performances that place women at the centre and is a perfect way to open 2018, the centenary year of female suffrage. We’re thrilled to be welcoming so many talented artists, who also happen to be women to the venue; breaking new ground in producing an all-female musical and celebrating a contemporary theatre classic. Hoxton Hall is a fitting venue to welcome diverse women’s voices across music, theatre, comedy and cabaret having the unusual history of being led by women for the last 44 years. This wonderfully interconnected season shouts loud and proud with a host of roaring women and we’re so excited.”
Continuing their work with the participation programme, Hoxton Hall will be offering a series of workshops alongside the season, which include a response piece for Oranges and Elephants, a Tonic Celebrates conversation with phenomenal women in theatre and they will host a Future Women debate on equality with young women to mark International Women’s Day.
Also supported by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, Hoxton Hall aims to encourage creatives from BAME backgrounds in the industry, welcoming three trainees into the venue to work in the technical department, directorial team and marketing and development department.