Calm Down, Dear 2020

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It’s back! Our annual festival of cutting-edge feminist theatre returns for a seventh edition: a snapshot in two dozen electrifying performances of where the battle is at for gender equality.

In Natasha Brown’s headliner White Girls [Will] Kill Mewe’ve got a combative takedown of so-called ‘white feminism’. Georgie Jones’ coming-of-age story Ish fuses standup, storytelling and spoken word into a celebration of the grotesque and glorious experience that is womanhood. Rampant Collective’s “hypnotic” Dublin Fringe hit Girlplay addresses female sex, love and sexuality in slam poetry.

And round the corner at Bloomsbury Theatre, CDD artists and UCL academics collaborate on a handful of brand new projects…

Do join us for three weeks of seriously striking theatre – theatre that’s anti-sexist, female-centric and fiercely alive.

Calm Down, Dear 2020 ticket offers:

Early Bird: book before midnight on Friday 13 March for tickets at just £7.50 – hurry, this offer is limited!

Season pass: book 3 or more shows as part of the festival and receive a 10% discount or book 5 or more to receive 20% off.

Double bill: book two different shows on the same night for just £16 (£8 each!)

For all of the above offers simply add your tickets to the basket and we’ll do the rest! (Only one offer can be redeemed at a time.)

Shows in this Festival

Mon 11 May, 2020

Presented by: Various artists

The first of three explosive nights of performance from which new universes of theatre may one day emerge, based around the themes of Calm Down, Dear

Tickets £12/£10 (conc.)

Mon 11 May, 2020

Presented by: Esther Shanson

Pretend Singing fits under a wider project idea called Abnormal Kindred where confessing ‘abnormal’ isolating experiences often unwittingly leads to a Me Too underground conversation.

Tickets £8 (conc.) £5 (UCL Student)

Tue 12 May, 2020

Presented by: Carolyn Defrin

Inspired by the structure and creative power of the menstrual cycle, 28 two-minute acts of poetic chat, dance, song, & cocktail-making propose a world of greater harmony between feminine & masculine energies.

Tickets £8 (work-in-progress)

Tue 12 May, 2020

Presented by: Maya Shimmin

Stemming from personal experiences, Dosage is an autobiographical two-hander, one female performer, one female sound designer, exploring the effect that the contraceptive pill can have on mental health.

Tickets £8/£5 (UCL Student)

Tue 12 May, 2020

Presented by: Emma Baskeyfield

Two sisters, ten years, why they quit figure skating and how they feel now. With rollerskating, spoken word, puppetry and fugly costumes, Go Figure talks blood, bisexuality, and beauty standards.

Tickets £12/£10 (conc.)

Wed 13 May, 2020

Presented by: Estlin Love

A bold and challenging interrogation into violence and love, BLEACH is a visually striking solo show which follows one woman’s rageful reckoning with love.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Wed 13 May, 2020

Presented by: Lucy Dear

A one-woman work in progress about a struggle for reason in psychologically abusive relationships.

Tickets £6 (£5 UCL students)

Wed 13 May, 2020

Presented by: Fiona Oliver-Larkin

In moments of crisis and absolute fear, everything stands still and doors can open to other worlds. A new solo visual theatre work, SALT is a magical-realist fairytale for adults.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Thu 14 May, 2020 to Sat 30 May, 2020

Presented by: Natasha Brown

You know how in Monopoly you get those ‘Get Out of Jail Free’ cards? What if people used them in real life?

Tickets £12/£10 (conc.)

Thu 14 May, 2020 to Fri 15 May, 2020

Presented by: Sarah Richardson

Meet Lucy. She’s average, awkward and when it comes to sex, what she lacks in experience she makes up for in curiosity. An exploration of love and sex spun out in slam.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Sat 16 May, 2020

Presented by: Blush

A gig theatre show about eating disorders, depression and feeling estranged from your body, Game Face mocks the absurdities of our beauty myths with wit, warmth, dancing and donuts.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Sun 17 May, 2020

Presented by: Karen Fisch

A very personal odyssey From Prejudice to Pride. She uses hilarious and heartbreaking anecdotes and songs to bring together 40 years of secret lesbian community history against the backdrop of British politics.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Sun 17 May, 2020

Presented by: Lorna Meehan

An autobiographical/verbatim show about dysfunctional vaginas, the big deal with virginity and how the myths about sex that we take as truth can seriously hinder our general wellbeing

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Mon 18 May, 2020

Presented by: Various artists

The second of three explosive nights of performance from which new universes of theatre may one day emerge, based around the themes of Calm Down, Dear

Tickets £12/£10 (conc.)

Tue 19 May, 2020

Presented by: Martha Watson Allpress

A 1950s housewife, a carnival dancer, two schoolgirls and a midwife share the stage: The Line of Us is an abstract look at what it is to be a female.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Tue 19 May, 2020

Presented by: Beth Watson

An autobiographical comedy about coming out as a teenage lesbian, only to discover that boys are also appealing.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Wed 20 May, 2020

Presented by: Authentic Artist Collective

For ten years Kath Burlinson has filmed her body ageing. This poetic and daring odyssey uses her naked form as a canvas in a ‘magical mix of wit and lyricism’ (Scotsman)

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Wed 20 May, 2020 to Fri 22 May, 2020

Presented by: Georgie Jones

Spoken word, standup and storytelling set to a soundtrack of nostalgic 90’s bangers in celebration of the simultaneously grotesque and glorious experience that is womanhood

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Sat 23 May, 2020

Presented by: ELOINA

“BRAVE. HILARIOUS. HONEST". Throwing a middle finger up to the patriarchy, FISH DON’T BLEED contrasts fairy tales with the stories that we are told about our bodies as young, growing women.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Sun 24 May, 2020

Presented by: Hot Lemon

For women, hunger is one of the most insistent cravings and it becomes the preeminent source of our anger (Bordo). It is a hunger for food, for space, for sex, for pleasure and for power.

Tickets £8 (work-in-progress)

Sun 24 May, 2020

Presented by: Official Culture

A show about the devoted, the disgruntled, the precarious and the 3-in-1 avocado tool. It’s about fuck-all wages and fake news and motivational cack which instructs you to seize happiness.

Tickets £8 (work-in-progress)

Mon 25 May, 2020

Presented by: Various artists

The final of three explosive nights of performance from which new universes of theatre may one day emerge, based around the themes of Calm Down, Dear

Tickets £12/£10 (conc.)

Tue 26 May, 2020

Presented by: Susannah Henry

A story for feminists and lovers of theatre costume, taking place within a traditional theatre hierarchy – where a designer’s work may be seen, but she is not always heard.

Tickets £7

Tue 26 May, 2020

Presented by: Global Voices Theatre, directed by Lora Krasteva

Based on true events, The snake bites.. is a devised, documentary-style exploration, shedding light on one of the most high profile corruption cases in Bulgaria.

Tickets £7

Tue 26 May, 2020

Presented by: Katherine Christie Evans

A musical glimpse into the life and desires of a queer classical musician with OCD, an Eating Disorder, a drumkit, exercise equipment and a wardrobe of historical costumes.

Tickets £7

Wed 27 May, 2020

Presented by: Viv Gordon

A first look at Viv Gordon’s new work shedding light on the scale and impact of childhood sexual abuse in the UK. Part performance, part installation, part collective act of resistance, Cutting Out offers bittersweet laughs and life affirming rage.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Wed 27 May, 2020

Presented by: Kat Lyons

Kat thought she was far too young to think about menopause; biology thought differently… Spoken word theatre exploring societal expectations of age and gender, and how we cope with loss.

Tickets £12/10 (conc.)

Thu 28 May, 2020

Presented by: Notes from Underground

What happens when you've been so determined not to be the victim, it transpires that you've become the villain...

Tickets £12/£10 (conc.)

Fri 29 May, 2020

Presented by: Sharlin Jahan

Sharlin’s Muslim mother wants her to get married, but also keeps telling her that men are out to ruin her purity. It’s a story about shame, culture clashes and feminism.

Tickets £8 (work-in-progress)

Sat 30 May, 2020

Presented by: Katayoun Jalili and Tallulah Haddon

Mystical Femmes are two confused aliens, who are trying to figure out how to eat and repopulate their lesbian species. They are apparently the "ambassadors” of the Femme experience.

Tickets £8 (work-in-progress)