Are older people now a nuisance? Do they cost too much? How does society view old women? And what do younger people really know about the older generation? Running for a limited season, Camilla Blunden presents All This Living! – a dynamic new work that speaks about all ages to all ages at the Knox Community Arts Centre on 19 February, and then The Butterfly Club from 22 February 2017.
When I grow up, I want to be an old woman. Old people have wisdom, experience, and are our story keepers. Older women are Matriarchs and authority figures… so when did becoming old mean becoming obsolete? Many cultures celebrate the aging process and venerate their elders but here in Australia, where youth is fetishised, aging can become a shameful experience. More so if you’re a woman.
A vibrant, contemporary work packed with humour, home truths, and leaps of the imagination, All This Living! is an engaging solo piece. Camilla Blunden brings us the enigmatic Jay, and Jay’s head is buzzing. Is she the incredible shrinking woman, a faint dot? Why is she disappearing? Ignored once too often as “just an old woman” Jay sets out to investigate what this third stage of life is…
“I’m aware, as an actor, of the very limited roles for women of my age and a lot of the stereotyping,” says Blunden. “I felt it was time to use this in a piece where an older woman would be a real individual, centre stage. I chatted with others about the way we really are as older women, the way we are often portrayed, and if we feature at all?”
“Audience reactions to the show have been great, particularly where someone says quietly or loudly ‘Yes!’ when the character has a certain moment. Many have spoken to me after the performance about their own similar experiences to moments that Jay has during the show.”
Writer and performer Camilla Blunden has over 35 years experience as a professional actor, director, creator, and mentor with organisations that include The Street Theatre, Jigsaw Theatre Company, Shortis and Simpson, The Ensemble Theatre Company, Bunch of Posers, and Women On A Shoestring Theatre Company.
All This Living!
Knox Community Arts Centre, Mountain Highway, Bayswater
Performance: Sunday 19 February 2017 – 2.00pm
The Butterfly Club, 5 Carson Place, Melbourne
Season: 22 – 26 February 2017
For more information, visit: www.camillablunden.com for details.
Image: Camilla Blunden in All This Living! – photo by Lorna Sim