A foul-mouthed, funny and unflinching exploration of the ways in which we view women’s lives, their bodies, their safety and their sexuality, Thread Entertainment presents Justin Martin’s production of Clare McIntyre’s award-winning play, Low Level Panic at the Old Fitz Theatre from 12 July 2016.
In our society, where femininity is often sanitised and represented in the terms of male fantasy, Low Level Panic is a breath of fresh air. The play presents female sexuality and self-image through the eyes of three women; three housemates who bicker over bathroom time, fight over the significance of pornos, fantasize and party.
“Amidst the recent reaction to Rebecca Maddern’s choice of dress on the Footy Show, or Cricketer Chris Gayle’s propositioning of Channel 10 sports reporter Mel McLaughlin, Clare’s play appears as resonant in an Australian context as it was in Ireland or the UK,” says director Justin Martin.
“The rise of the internet has seen a change in our experiences of anonymity and voyeurism. Images of women, which twenty years ago would have graced the pages of soft-core magazines, now advertise everything from fizzy drinks to chocolate bars and are beamed directly to our phones.”
“Porn may have changed in the last twenty years, but attitudes to women and female sexuality have not. Young girls are still instructed to dress in a way so as not to attract unwanted attention. Breast-feeding mothers are asked to cover up in some cafes to prevent offending patrons with the sight of pornography whilst they digest their corn fritters.”
“Women worldwide continue to berate themselves for not having a thigh gap like the digitally enhanced models gracing our magazine covers. To this world, Claire McIntyre’s Low Level Panic is a big ‘F**k you!’”
Justin Martin has spent the last two years directing on the new Netflix series The Crown under triple Oscar-nominated Stephen Daldry as well as working as Associate Director on Skylight (starring Carey Mulligan and Bill Nighy on Broadway and the West End), The Audience (starring Helen Mirren and Kristen Scott Thomas on Broadway and the West End), and international productions of Billy Elliott the Musical.
Geraldine Hakewill (Channel 7’s Wanted, The Pride), Amy Ingram (QTC’s The Odd Couple, The Seagull), and Kate Skinner (Music, The Great Lie of the Western World) will be starring in this gutsy production.
Clare McIntyre was amongst the extraordinary generation of British female playwrights who emerged in the 1980s. Her best-known plays, Low Level Panic and My Heart’s a Suitcase are now considered modern feminist classics, were staged at the Royal Court Theatre. Her other plays include: The Thickness of Skin and The Maths Tutor. She also had an extensive career writing and acting for film, radio and television including EastEnders. She died in November 2009.
“Martin’s innovative production succeeds in balancing high entertainment with a probing of issues that are becoming more and more pressing in our contemporary mediatised culture.” – The Public Reviews
Director: Justin Martin Featuring: Geraldine Hakewill, Amy Ingram, Kate Skinner Production Design: Jonathan Hindmarsh Lighting Design: Emma Lockhart-Wilson Choreography: Tom Hodgson Music Composition: Claire Healy Writer: Clare McIntyre
Low Level Panic
Old Fitz Theatre, Old Fitz Theatre, 129 Dowling Street, Woolloomooloo
Season: 12 July – 12 August 2016
Information and Bookings: www.oldfitztheatre.com
Image: Kate Skinner in Low Level Panic – photo by Tony Davison