MONDAY 1 MARCH 2021 THISWEEKCULTURE.COM
ROSIE WILBY: THE BREAKUP MONOLOGUES
We've been fans of Rosie Wilby for quite some time now, not least because of the fab shows she's done at edfringe and elsewhere.

The reason for speaking to her this week, though, is because of a special live recording of her fab podcast 'The Breakup Monologues', which you should definitely get around to absorbing, if you haven't already.

And if you have, as well as taking in the upcoming live recording, you should also start planning to read the accompanying book, which is out later this year.

It seemed like a great time to catch up with Rosie, to find out more about the upcoming event, how things have been going in this pandemic year, and what we can expect from her in the future.

CLICK HERE to read this Caro Meets interview.

This special live recording of 'The Breakup Monologues' will be broadcast via Poplar Union on 8 Mar. For more information and to book, see this page here.
With full-on COVID restrictions still in place, this week we are tipping the best in digital culture from across the UK - including online shows from performers and companies we first discovered at the Edinburgh Festival.


THREE FUNNY THINGS>>

Just The Tonic - Working From Home | 6 Mar
Almost feels like the end of lockdown might be in sight doesn't it? That being said, we are mostly still stuck at home each evening, wishing we could go out to a comedy night. Well, maybe not everyone is wishing that, but I reckon at least some of you are, so I have three great online comedy options for you to consider this week. Starting with a familiar favourite, Just The Tonic's 'Working From Home', which this time features a stellar line up including Zoe Lyons, Reginald D Hunter, Jack Gleadow, Lloyd Griffith and Darrell Martin, plus regulars Mick Ferry, Scott Bennett, Tom Binns and Mark Simmons. See this page here.

Comedy For The Curious: Conspiracy Theories | Laugh Train Home | 7 Mar
We've recommended 'Comedy For The Curious' a couple of times recently, and here I am doing it again because I feel like conspiracy theories are something I would really like to see discussed via this format, given how many of said theories I see floating around these days. As always, it's hosted by the wonderful Robyn Perkins (see our interview with her from summer 2020 here) and this time it features the presence of Jarred Christmas and Abbie Richards. Find out more info and book your ticket right about here.

Stand Up 4 Women | Phoenix Arts Club | 5 Mar (pictured)
Finally, we're heading over to the Phoenix Arts Club for a fabulous livestream for International Women's Day, which is officially a couple of days later on 8 Mar. This evening of stand up comedy, aiming to heighten awareness regarding domestic abuse and raise funds for Solace Women's Aid, is hosted by Sikisa and the line up includes Alison Spittle, Leila Navabi, Kemah Bob, Janine Hauroni, Njambi McGrath, Chloe Petts and Jayde Adams. For more info and to book yourself in, see this page here.


THREE THEATRICAL THINGS>>

Suitcase Under The Stairs | Greenwich Theatre | until 7 Mar (pictured)
This streaming theatrical show has been available since 26 Feb but you still have plenty of time to see it. It's a semi-autobiographical piece about the line between a drag artist's actual character and their on-stage persona. "ROSE XO might be a successful drag queen, but some people think she's just plain rude. As she peels off her fishnets, false lashes and wig after another sold-out show, we begin to see the consequences of the havoc she wreaks on stage". For more information and to book tickets, head this way.

Love In The Lockdown | The Telling | 4 Mar-23 May
This is a new - and topical - online play with music, which is set to be released in in nine weekly episodes, beginning this week. Written by Claire Norburn, and directed by Nicholas Renton, it charts the relationship of Emilia, a musician, and Giovanni, a playwright, as they come together at a distance through Zoom dates and a shared artistic project. The episodes are released in 'real time' - each dropping exactly a year after the events depicted would have occurred. If you see what I mean. It stars familiar faces Rachael Stirling and Alec Newman. See the first instalment here from 4 Mar.

A Game Not Lost | The Space | 2-6 Mar
A biographical and historical play about 19th century Chinese female pirate Ching Shih, who ruled the Red Flag Fleet in Qing Dynasty China. "Sit down for a game of Mahjong with one of the most feared and powerful women of all time, Ching Shih. With each wrong move, Ching recounts a small part of her history. Her life now coming in full circle from prostitute, to pirate captain, to madam, to mother; proving no destiny is too bold. Ching turned her femininity into a weapon when the world saw it as her weakness". More here.


THREE FESTIVAL THINGS>>

StAnza Festival | 6-14 Mar (pictured)
If you've not heard of it before, StAnza is Scotland's annual festival focusing entirely on poetry, based in St Andrews, though this year it's happening online. There are loads and loads of events, and so I am struggling to pick out what I think most deserves your attention, but there is definitely something for everyone, including digital installations, films, workshops, readings, spoken word, and appearances from the likes of Naomi Shihab Nye, Jericho Brown, Sasha Dugdale, Maria Stepanova, Tishani Doshi and Rab Wilson. Plus there's a children's event featuring Roger McGough. Read more here.

Women Of The World Festival | 1-21 Mar
And another festival - again happening this year in an online manner, instead of at the Southbank Centre as in previous times - with the focus on women and featuring the likes of Kimberlé Crenshaw, Ruby Wax, Arundhati Roy, Sheila Heti, Avni Doshi and Bryony Kimmings. Though of course, as is always the case, some of the most interesting events don't necessarily involve the headliners. As the festival organisers point out, pandemic year has in many cases been extra tough on women, and there will be events reflecting that as well as more general issues. The listings for all the events are here, take a look and see what piques your interest.

An Orange In The Subway | Vault Video Club | 4-11 Mar
Okay, well this is not really a festival event, but it sorta kinda is because if things were normal right now we'd be enjoying the fruits of the fabulous annual Vault Festival. But you know, pandemic. So instead they decided to launch the Vault Video Club to rerun past festival favourites for you to take in at home. Available this week is 'Orange In The Subway' by Owen Thomas, which follows eighteen year old Cassie "who is homeless in Cardiff, and her experiences on the streets of life, death and violence. On a cold night, she meets a Spaceman who grants her three magical powers. But the magic is not what it seems..." More here.


THREE MORE ONLINE TREATS>>

The Great Gatsby | The Wardrobe Ensemble and The Wardrobe Theatre | 1-31 Mar (pictured)
"Invited to an extravagant party in a Long Island mansion, young bachelor Nick Carraway is intrigued by the flamboyant host, Jay Gatsby; a self-made, self-invented millionaire with a mysterious past. As the two strike up an unlikely friendship, a cocktail soaked story of memory, money and lost love unfolds". You all probably know the story by now, but here's an intriguing sounding two woman performance of it, co-presented by Bristol's Wardrobe Theatre and Wardrobe Ensemble, whose fab shows have impressed us up at the old edfringe. See this page here.

London Expat | Storielibere.fm
You might possibly be aware of the work of Cecilia Gragnani, specifically a show called 'Diary Of An Expat', a comedic solo performance that won acclaim during runs at the edfringe and in London, and which examined her situation in light of the referendum result. As European artists are facing what Brexit will mean to the industry, Gragnani has 'revitalised' the piece as 'London Expat', a podcast about what it's like to be an expat living in the capital, in which she appears alongside guest star Jonny Woo. Available via all podcast platforms, there are three episodes currently available and three more will drop in the coming months. Read more about it here.

Party | Half Moon Theatre | 6-19 Mar
Finally, I thought I would throw in something for the kids, because, you know, I've got nothing against kids. This is for younger children, aged from two to four, live recorded at the lovely Half Moon Theatre. "Afonso wants to go to his best friend's birthday party, but where is his invitation - has it been lost in the post, or was he even invited? When it finally arrives the excitement and nerves of actually going become too much to handle. What should he wear? Will they have balloons? Will anyone play with him? And what about the cake?" Book here.
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