Katie, Mia and Simon - Female Transport Production Team
Our Week 3 show this semester, Female Transport runs from 16th - 19th October and tells the story of six hardy female convicts on a one-way trip to Australia. Spotlight sat down with director Katie, producer Mia and production manager Simon to find out more.
What inspired you to direct/production manage a show, and what led you to choose Female Transport?
Katie: I first came across Female Transport when I was in sixth form and I instantly taken by the show and really loved all the female characters. When I joined SUTCo I really wanted someone to propose the show as I was desperate to be in it, but I quickly realised no one else had even heard of it and that if I wanted to see it performed at university, I would have to direct it myself.
Simon: It seemed to be a really challenging but also really interesting piece, so I wanted to be a part of making it happen.
How do you feel about the themes explored in the show? Do you think people today can learn something from the piece?
Mia: I think that there’s definitely a political relevance to the show today, particularly as it looks at how these women are being treated in a male-dominated environment.
Katie: A lot of the themes in Female Transport are quite distressing and so we have had to approach them with a lot of sensitivity and consideration towards the actors and the audience. It’s not necessarily a theme, but I think one of the most important elements of this show is the women and their strength and resilience. We see them endure so much, but they never lose that sense of self or their individual personalities and we see them use their experiences to grow and fight back.
Simon: The themes of the play highlight the huge flaws in society at the time, the echoes of which still linger to date. It tells everyone a lot about a hidden part of our history that we should never forget.
What's been the most challenging part of your job so far?
Simon: For me the biggest challenge was the set and trying to turn the drama studio into [SPOILERS]*.
Katie: As a first-time director this has been a huge learning experience and it took me a few rehearsals to really feel confident in myself and my vision. I would have to say that one of the most challenging parts of my job has been keeping spirits high in the rehearsal room, especially when we are doing quite distressing and hard-hitting scenes, and making sure that what I have been envisioning in my head is clearly relayed to the cast and then onto the stage.
Mia: Not losing the money from the pub quiz and BB’s in West Street Live – I have never held onto a rucksack so hard!
Tell us your funniest/most embarrassing story about the making of Female Transport!
Katie: My most embarrassing moment was probably when I accidentally slapped Caitlin full in the face during a very heated game of ninja. I felt so awful and I still haven’t quite lived it down yet.
Simon: I thought the funniest part was our cast and crew social to Quasar - it was just so much fun to do something so silly and to have a bit of a competition between the cast and crew.
Mia: Probably the funniest part was when Ellen split her bloomers, or when Eleanor comes on stage wearing the [SPOILERS]*.
*If you want to find out what made Simon stress and Mia chuckle, get your tickets for Female Transport today!