Rebellious Acts - meet our writers: Kate Saffin

Meet the writers behind Female Arts 'Rebellious Acts' production this Saturday 14th May at South Street Arts Centre. Introducing Kate Saffin, the writer of 'Isobel's War'.

ISOBEL'S WAR will whisk you back to the days of World War II when a shortage of crews to keep the working narrow boats going brought a new breed of boatwomen to the canal. Nicknamed the ‘Idle Women’ after their Inland Waterways national service badge they learned a whole new way of life on the boats. Isobel decides there are better ways to do her bit than sitting at home with her mother while her RAF husband wins the war…

Written and performed by long time boatwoman Kate Saffin, the play draws on the written acounts and memories of the trainees and of the working boat women of the time.

KATE SAFFIN: Boater, writer, storyteller and actor, Kate Saffin, has lived on a narrowboat and told stories of the waterways as solo plays since 1999. She trained as a writer for stage and broadcast media at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama (MFA).

She adapted the waterway classic ‘Ramlin Rose; the Boatwoman’s story’ by the late Sheila Stewart. Other plays have retold the (apparently) true story of a brothel on a boat (A Boat of Ill Repute) and a late coming of age for a pensioner who finds herself on holiday on a boat (Finding Libby). She has performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Oxfringe, at waterway festivals, in village halls and pub gardens.

Isobel’s War is based on interviews and existing accounts of the young women who worked on the boats during the second world war as well as the working boatwomen whose world was changed by the new arrivals to tell Isobel’s story.

Kate Saffin’s performance is naturalistic, painfully funny, poised and thoroughly on top of the material (Fringe Review on ‘Finding Libby’ Edinburgh Fringe Festival Aug 2013)

Rebellious Acts is Female Arts' 5th birthday show featuring dramatic new writing from the Female Arts team and our friends including ST GEORGE’S DAY by Hannah Roe, THE SECRET LIFE OF JENNIE HARTE by Amie Taylor, PRIVATE by Liz Carroll, I SMILE POLITELY by Ness Lyons and Alarum Theatre presents ISOBEL’S WAR by Kate Saffin, a drama about a young woman defying family expectations to manage 50 ton boats and cargo in World War II. The evening closes with a post-show discussion on feminism in theatre. Saturday, May 14th 7.30pm at South Street Arts Centre. 21 South Street, Reading, RG1 4QU
Tickets £7.50 (£4 concessions) | Box Office 0118 960 6060 |
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