9 Jan 2010

Constance Smedley play

The Ruscombe-based Stroud Theatre Company presents another innovative new play with a visual and local twist - The Amazing and Preposterous Constance Smedley by Frank Hatt. It will be at the Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham: March 11th-13th 2010.

Pic of Constance from Lyceum website - see here.

I'd not heard of this woman until I got involved in the Stroud Theater Company Management Committee - it is an amazing tale and great that it will now reach a wider audience. Here is some of the info about her from the Theatre Company:

Constance Smedley was born in 1876. By 1908, she was a celebrity: a successful artist, playwright, novelist and feminist journalist. She had founded the International Lyceum Club for Women, established its clubhouse in London , and overseen the foundation of similar Lyceum Clubs in Amsterdam, Paris, Berlin and Florence. And then she did three surprising things. She gave up the Lyceum Club. She married an impoverished homosexual artist called Maxwell Armfield. And she renounced London and the international scene and set up house in Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire....

What makes Constance Smedley's achievements all the more remarkable is that from the age of six she was unable to walk without the aid of crutches....This exciting new play gives us a slice of forgotten local history, but also a bigger story: of a disabled woman with forty publications to her name, who contributed significantly to the women's movement, the international peace movement and the avant-garde theatre of the early twentieth century.

Stroud Theatre Company have also recently launched an opportunity to invest in the Company or to become a "friend" of the Company for a small fee. Information on these opportunities will be on their website very soon:

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