The Woman is Present: Women’s Stories of WWII

October 10, 2017

Coming to Draíocht in November as part of its International Tour



The Woman is Present: Women’s Stories of WW2

Smashing Times Theatre and Film Company with
Playwrights Deirdre Kinahan, Mary Moynihan, Fiona Bawn Thompson and Paul Kennedy​




A creative re-imagining of moments from the lives of women during WWII recalling stories of bravery, sacrifice and love amidst the horror of war, as women stood up against fascism and totalitarianism and refused to accept oppression. Each performance is followed by a post-show discussion with the artists and invited guest speakers to explore powerful women’s stories in history and themes of gender equality and peace in Ireland, Northern Ireland and internationally. The performance goes on national and international tour to Ireland, Northern Ireland and Germany from September 2017 to February 2018, and we are delighted to welcome it to Draíocht.
 


Women’s stories in the performance include Mary Elmes (1908-2002), a Cork woman who was the first Irish person honoured as ‘Righteous Among Nations’ for her work saving Jewish children from the Nazi gas chambers during World War II; Ettie Steinberg (1914-42) the only female Jewish Irish citizen known to have been murdered in Auschwitz; Marta Hillers (1911-2001) from Germany who wrote her autobiography Eine Frau in Berlin (A Woman in Berlin) under the name ‘Anonyma’ (Anonymous), detailing her experiences of the last days of WWII as she and over one million other women were raped and abused by Allied soldiers of the Red Army; Neus Català Pallejà (b.1915) from Spain, a member of the United Socialist Party of Catalonia during the Spanish Civil War, an active collaborator with the French Resistance during WWII and the only living Spanish survivor of Ravensbrück  concentration camp for women;  Maria Eugenia Jasińska (1906-43) from Łódź in Poland who worked for the resistance and gave up her own life rather than ‘name names’; and Dolores Ibárruri, or La Pasionaria (1895-1989), from Spain, a revolutionary leader, political activist, communist and crusader against Fascism during the Spanish Civil War who created the famous cry ‘They Shall Not Pass’.



Audience Feedback

‘Such a moving piece of theatre. The performances were excellent’. Sabina Coyne Higgins

‘Thanks Freda and all the cast and crew of The Woman is Present! What a wonderful evening’ Mary Duffin, Audience member

‘Saw ‘The Woman is Present’ last night, a call to the heart: Stop war and trumpet the heroism of women, missing from history’. Dr Eric Weitz, TCD

‘It was just brilliant! The two actors were phenomenal. Well done to everyone involved!’  Niamh Clowery, Audience member

‘Brilliant, moving, eye opening journey into stories of women’s bravery tonight. Well done to all involved’, Audience Member




BOOK NOW:
The Woman is Present: Women’s Stories of WW2
Smashing Times Theatre and Film Company 

Thursday 30 November 2017  8pm
Draíocht, The Blanchardstown Centre, Dublin 15
Booking: (0)1 885 2622 / Tickets: €16 / €14 conc
OR ONLINE
 


The women’s stories featured in the performance can be found in the Women War and Peace Digital Book, with a foreword by Marian Harkin, MEP, which contains 23 stories of women’s experiences during World War II and is now available online. The book was launched at the Mansion House, Dublin on 8 November 2016 by Mary Lawlor, Front Line Defenders and Cllr Rebecca Moynihan, Deputy Lord Mayor of Dublin. The editor of the book is Mary Moynihan, Artistic Director, Smashing Times Theatre and Film Company and Lecturer, BA in Drama (Performance), Conservatory of Music and Drama, and key contributors are Edyta Pietrzak, Inga Kuzma, Fernando Benavente Tendillo, Kilian Cuerda Ros, Arne Schrader, Freda Manweiler, Mary Moynihan, Jessie Maguire, Bernard Wilson (writing about the life of Mary Elmes) and Nadia Clare Smith (writing about the life of Dorothy MacArdle). 



 

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