The Yellow Coat Theatre Company, formed in 2017, are behind Pass It On, a new writing monologue programme for emerging writers, performers and directors who are from marginalised genders (women and non-binary).
Over three consecutive nights (23-25 February) direct from The Space, three companies performed a range of work (all repeated live on 26 February) before an audience both at the venue and online. Under the stewardship of company founders Caron Kehoe and Emma Lamond, a mother and daughter duo, this range of monologues came to life.
A small proportion of pieces were performed by their writers each night, with others brought to life by gifted actors inhabiting the characters. Some monologues are static, performed from a seat or a single position (Tell Me, by Hannah Petch, There Once Was a Girl by Hannah Eggleton); others deeply physical and leading both audience and camera in a dance of the eyes (The Medusa Cave, by Rebecca Lyon; Where Art Thou Cornflakes, by Michaela Wilkinson).
The split into three companies means each night has a wide variety of topics, styles, and themes – but all are about the loved experience of women whether tragic, comic, or anything in-between. The big events and feelings are here as well as the small. Nothing is filtered or taboo.
None run beyond ten minutes; often less, and yet scripts have been honed and shows directed to bring out their best. Each performer is watched by their peers on stage, giving a feeling of companionship and support. Some monologues are directed to the audience (Medal, by Cathianne Hall; There Was an Old Lady Who by Sarah Rickman); one is in the form of a letter; another is to a job applicant for a very unique job. These are diverse and talented new voices, emerging creative talents, solo showcases.
If you were to choose just one showcase you would be guaranteed a good time and an entertaining evening. I knew some of the names on show, but others were new and I am now seeking out what they have done before and what they have in the works. As a digital showcase I enjoyed all three nights, finding them captured well by the camera without diminishing the applause of those watching live at The Space.
These are female experiences as wide as you can get, highlighted by the snapshots lining the walls, capturing what’s important. There are insular musings on self (The Look, by Jessica-Ann Jenner), and observations on what is going on around the speaker (Sheets, by Sara Galvin). Performers are of different ages, colours, shapes – what they have in common is an ability to connect, whatever kind of story they are telling.
I enjoyed all the performances so a shout out to all here: Laura Rea, Elisha Mistretta, Emma Lamond, Fiona White, Nash Hernandez, Ellie Uragallo, Lucy-Beresford Knox and Salwa Jghalef (Company A); Tina Rizzo, Mary Chater, Marina Johnson, Claire Emmott, Aoife Boyle, Chloe Wade and Caron Kehoe (Company B); Sarah Rickman, Michaela Wilkinson, Wendy Fisher, Melanie Hopkins, Hannah Eggleton, Linda Mathis, Sojourner Hazelwood-Connell and Eloise Westwood (Company C).
Pass It On is available on-demand until 12 March. You can choose to purchase access to just one showcase (starting price £10) or to all three. Go here for tickets and more information.
For more about Yellow Coat Theatre Company follow them on Twitter, where you can find full details of all the creatives involved with this project.