4 - 12 November 2022

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Saturday 5 – Saturday 12 November


A spectacular new short film from Olivier award-winning performance maker Marisa Carnesky, Showwomen is a feminist rewrite: the untold herstory of British working-class entertainment from immigrant, queer and activist perspectives.

Marisa Carnesky narrates and performs alongside guest stars hair hanger/comedienne Fancy Chance, sword and spoken word artist Livia Kojo Alour, Romany clairvoyant Sarah Petulengro and former showgirl Bez Cooper. 

Interweaving live action, in-depth interviews and archival footage Showwomencreates a dreamlike landscape, mixing death defying stunts, strange and emotive acts with a sense of feminist self-determination. Revealing their drives and their ambitions through from a place of female subjectivity we learn what it takes to perform and be in charge of extraordinary careers.

The film explores the legacy of working-class women in variety and the crossovers between past and the present. It explores the strong connections between women reviving rare circus skills in contemporary circus to women who work in traditional seaside entertainments- revealing matriarchal traditions and an insight into the unique lives of showwomen.

A Short Film Directed and Conceived By Marisa Carnesky

Commissioned By The Space

Produced By Anne Beresford Artemis Films

Edited by Rosie Powell

Photography Rosie Powell, Simon Wilkinson, Julia Alcamo

Featuring a specially commissioned soundtrack by James Johnston (Gallon Drunk) Kath Warg (Snowpony) and Dave Knight (Unicazurn).

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