Last week Mighty Heart Theatre, with the help of our super wonderful mates at HOME MCR hosted our first Chin-wag event (the first we hope of many!). We were joined by a panel of 6 wonderful female artists, a 40 strong glorious audience and a LOT of home made baked treats and the outcome was something pretty special…A new movement and a determination for encouragement, strength and togetherness!
Everyone arrived bit by bit and shared cakes and chatty catch ups, it was such a lovely atmosphere in the room before we even started! Some of our guests even brought cake with them, which more than made up for the fact that we had misplaced the tea urn and could only offer people water.
Kim Kardashian even turned up!
Well she was there to help us launch our ‘Get Kim To Edinburgh’ campaign! We want to get our world change show about body image to as many eyes, ears and hearts as possible… (Check it out: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/user/mightyhearttheatre/dashboard/get-kim-to-edinburgh).
We started the night by readying this quote that Sam found in her Oh Comely magazine (if you haven’t already, you should give it a read )
We asked questions and discussed lots of different challenges that face the creative women of today and tomorrow;
‘What advice would you give your 20 year old self?’
‘How do you manage life and work?’
‘What is the best bit of creative related advice you have ever been given?’
The panel, a collection of diverse and fabulous women (Yusra Warsama, Maggie and Sue from Lip Service Theatre, Emily Coxhead, Liz Richardson and Leanne from Letterbox Lane) helped spark encouragment in their answers. Through their words they showed us that we can have it all! A family and a career, Maggie and Sue used to tour in half term to enable the kids to join them, Liz spoke about the joy of having a life along side her work as a creative and how so many creatives feel like they can’t do it all, WELL WE CAN!
We discussed the cuts to drama in schools and the effect it has on our society, we realised that we have a responsibility as artists to engage and help keep art alive for all folks. “Drama in schools is like ‘the air in school’ it has a deep rooted effect on the school.”.
We were all reminded that we shouldn’t apologies for ourselves in this cretive world and that we should give our selves permission to have confidence. We deserve to be able to do what we do and own each step. It was great to hear everyone speak about different experiences and struggles…its a reminder that we all have a journey to go on and very few journeys are smooth.
We finished with a written piece by our friend Ann Ogbomo, who couldn’t be with us for the evening, Ann has world with lots of all female companies and she spoke about how important it is for women to champion other women. She also spoke passionately about how we should not be put into boxes, we should have the right to our own rules, “As soon as you put me in a box, that box sure as hell is not going to fit”.
The audience were fierce and wonderful and shared ideas, opinions and support. They were all united in the opinion that competition is ingrained in us, from where? well, everywhere! We all agreed that we should all be kinder to ourselves and each other when it comes to this competitive industry or we haven’t got a chance!
We all came to the conclusion that this supportive feeling shouldn’t be isolated to one room on a windy Tuesday in May, it should be something we live and make work by. We decided we should most definitely do this again!
Some people made a pledge on a post-it, a pledge to themselves to reflect on next time we meet. The pledges on these post-its are inspiring and strong, take a look:
So heres to the first Chin-wag! We have collected emails from our creative conversation and aim to meet up again in a few months, if you would like to join us please feel free to email us on firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add you to the mailing list for the next Mighty Chin-wag!
So, until next time ladies (and Gents), keep up the good fight, we can make change, we are making change…this is our time to smash out of the box!
Peace, love and baked goods
Lisa and Sam