Plain Heroines is a new theatre company led by three soon-to-be Cambridge graduates, Gabbie Bird, Aoife Kennan and Kate Reid.
Aoife and Kate are the brilliant writers (and also cracking actors) whose work we are taking to the fringe and Gabbie is our Director / Producer – Artistic Director is perhaps the right term but she finds that slightly daunting…
Having worked together on loads of projects throughout our degrees we decided to properly team up to attack the fringe with a our double-bill of new writing that focuses on interesting, contemporary female characters.
As well as that, we want to use our blog to celebrate the incredible amount of female characters that already exist from those that are known, to those that are quietly living in the pages without the celebration they deserve.
We’re a long way from gender equality in theatre, but we want to help be part of the change that’s happening to fight that, and celebrate the work that other theatre makers are doing.
As for our name… Aoife is a bit of a Brontë nut and came across this pearl of wisdom that neatly summarises how female characters can be more that just pretty faces, how they can be just as interesting as the men, how indeed, in fiction, women ought to be the plain heroines that they are in real life.
Charlotte Brontë once told her sisters that they were wrong – even morally wrong – in making their heroines beautiful as a matter of course. They replied that it was impossible to make a heroine interesting on any other terms. Her answer was, “I will prove to you that you are wrong; I will show you a heroine as plain and as small as myself, who shall be as interesting as any of yours.”
From Elizabeth Gaskell, The Life of Charlotte Brontë