Tired Mummy is Making a Show: On Interrupted Time and Space, 2023

A presentation about a work-in-progress performance entitled The Distaff Side, based on an eight page extract of Life Among the Savages by Shirley Jackson. The extract documents a long night in Jackson's house with her family, in which they all have the flu and is written as a list of moves involving family members, their objects, and their locations, on the second floor of their house. The list creates a portrait of the writer-mother as she makes her way through the domestic tasks of the night. Susannah Henry found herself reading the list as a series of stage directions and wondering whether it could be performed.

This online ResearchWorks event at Guildhall opened up the process of staging and rehearsing the sequence from Life Among the Savages, as a method for thinking through the twin responsibilities of maintaining a creative practice and motherhood, in a landscape of interrupted time and space. A twenty-minute scratch performance of The Distaff Side was shared at the TaPRA Conference 2023, at the University of Leeds.

Wild Thing (I Think I Love You): Re-wilded space understood through new parenthood, 2022

A project about encountering the newly re-wilded spaces of home and the body through becoming a mother. This photographic project was assembled in the early part of 2022 following the birth of my son. It was delivered as a 15 minute performative paper at the Theatre and Performance Research Association (TaPRA) Conference at the University of Essex in September 2022. With music by The Troggs.

Talk Thy Tongue Weary (short film) 2020

Talk Thy Tongue Weary was a design-led performance telling the story of a theatre costume: a dress. It was designed for a British opera production and found years later by its designer (the performer in this show) on a rail in a costume hire house. Meticulously researched and designed, carefully constructed by a team of women, then worn enthusiastically by the mature soprano in the leading role, the costume was cut from the opera in un-feminist circumstances. This solo performance celebrated and gave voice to collective female artistry and the full, concealed story of the dress. The production aimed to explore how a feminist perspective on stage design is forged while working within a traditional theatre hierarchy – where a designer’s work may be seen, but she is not always heard. This performance was cancelled due to the pandemic, and subsequently realised in lockdown as a short film, made in the designer's kitchen.

Happy Families, 2020

A short performative presentation about five feminist friends.

On My Washing Machine in Lockdown, 2020

A short performative presentation on interruption, domestic labour and creativity.

Mothering, 2020

A short performative presentation discussing the maternal presence in academic writing.

London Stories, Battersea Arts Centre, 2013

Story: Everything I Thought It Would Be, and More

An eight-minute story about grief, told twelve times a night to audiences of two at a time. Sited in the Recreation Room at Battersea Arts Centre, with a view of the London skyline.

Take Heart, ArtLacuna, 2015

An intimate performance about family revelation, told through live collage and spoken word.

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