Saturday, December 10, 2011

Reading of Judith Thompson’s Big Girl

Event: Reading of Judith Thompson’s Big Girl
, Nightwood Theatre
From the multi-award-winning grand dame of Canadian playwriting comes the new play, Big Girl/The F Word (Working Title) which decodes the communication gap between second wave feminists and young women.Q and A to follow.
Date/Time: Saturday, December 10th at 4:30pm
Location: Nightwood Studio
PWYC (suggested donation $5)



Nightwood is thrilled to welcome Judith Thompson as our 2011-12 Ontario Arts Council playwright-in-residence.

During her one year residency at Nightwood Judith will develop her new play Big Girl (working Title) about the communication gap between second wave feminists and young women. Judith’s work is particularly exciting for Nightwood because it speaks directly to the challenges faced within Nightwood’s mandate as Canada’s premiere feminist theatre company. 
“I strongly feel it is time for this story to be told. Many young women struggle with identifying as feminists and equate it with the archetypal angry woman who refuses to shave and wear lipstick. Moreover the fault lines that have arisen amongst second and third wave feminists have proven to be more divisive then unifying, insisting that there be a singular approved brand of feminism. This kind of tension is ripe for theatrical conflict and I am eager to humanize this debate and put it in the mouths of characters.”
-Judith Thompson

One of Canada’s most highly regarded playwrights. A graduate of Queen’s University with a B.A. in English (1976), and of the National Theatre School of Canada ‘s acting section (1979), she worked only briefly as an actor before beginning to write. Her plays are performed across the country in both official languages. Her first work, The Crackwalker (Theatre Passe Muraille 1980) grew out of her experience as a social worker with adult protective services, from monologues she wrote to express the character of a mentally challenged woman. It evokes the lives of dysfunctional and angry individuals in Kingston’s lower depths, struggling to find a sense of security. She has twice won the Governor General’s Award for White Biting Dog (1984) and the anthology The Other Side of the Dark (1989); and the Chalmers Award for I am Yours (1987) and Lion in the Streets (1991). Sled (1997), Perfect Pie (2000), and Capture Me (2004) all premiered at the Tarragon Theatre (all directed by Judith Thompson). Habitat played at Canadian Stage September, 2001. Enoch Arden “by Alfred Lord Jabber and his catatonic songstress” premiered at the Toronto Theatre Centre in 2005. In 2008 the Canadian Stage Company premiered Palace of the End (dir. David Storch) on its Berkeley Street stage. Such Creatures (dir. Brian Quirt) premiered at Theatre Passe Muraille in 2010, thirty years after her first play in Passe Muraille’s second space, The Crackwalker.  Judith Thompson has written many radio plays, including Tornado (1987), which won the ACTRA award for Best Radio Drama, and White Sand (1991). She has also adapted and directed Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler for the Shaw Festival (1991). In 2007 she was awarded the Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts. The $50,000 prize, administered and presented by the Canada Council for the Arts, recognizes the highest level of artistic excellence and distinguished career achievement by Canadian artists who have spent the major part of their career in Canada in theatre, dance or music. In 2008 she was awarded the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize for Palace of the End. This American award celebrates outstanding plays in English by women.

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