I am thrilled to announce a new project hurtling swiftly toward me. The Junction Theatre in Cambridge has offered a residency to me and the poet Hannah Walker… and we have been awarded a grant funding the residency by the Arts Council today!
In an ancient French story, a young woman is married to a wealthy but ugly man named Bluebeard. He goes away, leaving her with keys to all the rooms in his vast mansion, only forbidding the use of one small key. The woman is overcome with curiosity, uses the forbidden key and opens an underground chamber. She finds the dead bodies of Bluebeard’s former wives. When the Weinstein tsunami broke, I felt like Bluebeard’s wife at the chamber door. A truth had been uncovered. I previously thought I was a feminist, but really I accepted the Weinstein dynamics my entire life. I reached out to women she respected and found a shared feeling: Lucy Prebbles didn’t feel like she was a feminist as much as a recovering misogynist. Hannah Jane Walker suspected women were not blameless in this #metoo moment.
Hannah and I will be working on a show that explores how women are complicit in the cultural forces that shaped Bluebeard. Stay tuned for opportunities to participate in discussions and scratch performances later this year. We don’t know what the show will look like, but we do know we owe it to our daughters.