Happy New Year 2015!

Happy New Year!

We hope that this finds you all well.

2015 is already proving a rich and eventful year for us here at Dreadnought HQ, with some wonderful news to share with you: we have recently received funding from Arts Council England South West, Exeter City Council and Fawcett Devon, which will enable us to get out and about in the region during March and April. It also allows us to continue our Rebellious Sounds project, seeking out stories about women and activism in the South West region. Have a look at these fascinating interviews (undertaken by Belinda Dillon) on our website: www.dreadnoughtsouthwest.org.uk/radicalvoices

We’re doubly delighted and excited as in this pre-general election time we can share with you a development of our new play, The Orchard, that we began in 2014; written by Natalie McGrath, directed by Josie Sutcliffe and performed by Michelle Ridings and Ruth Mitchell.

In this imagined meeting. Amidst heightened militancy. Amidst the sound of women walking. Emmeline is on the run. In hiding. A fugitive (“I am a wolf.”) Millicent is marching. Making preparations (“It is the hive I love.”) In her element. The moderate and the radical. Which is which? In private. In an unnamed orchard, where no one else can see.

We invite you to join us as we host a series of unique ‘scratch’ performances across the region. These scratch performances are similar to script-in-hand or rehearsed readings of the material we have so far. We want you, our supporters and audiences, to have your say in this pre-election time and to add your voice to our creative process through lively q&a sessions and debates on the issues contained in the play; the importance of using the vote, democracy, equality, women’s voices and the paradoxes of leadership.

Nine million women did not use their vote in the last UK general election in 2010.  What will happen this May?

As well as the performances, there will be free workshops and associated events taking place in Redruth (2nd & 3rd March), Bodmin (4th March), Teignmouth (11th & 12th March), Exeter (19th & 20th March), Corsham (26th March), Plymouth (24th April) and Stawley Pavilion in Somerset (25th April).

Full listings of all Dreadnought activities will follow very soon. We would love you to share this newsletter with friends and family you think may be interested – you can use the buttons on the right to do this via Facebook or Twitter, or to forward it to an email address.

We look forward to seeing familiar faces and new ones too, on our Rebellious Sounds: The Orchard Roadshow.

Sending very best wishes,

Co-Artistic Directors Josie Sutcliffe & Natalie McGrath.

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