Revelation & redemption – The Drowning Girls

Be sure to read all the way through this review to get an insider’s peek backstage: pix of the plumbing magic rigged up by Master Carpenter Mike Peck. He tells me that before he got the loan of a sump pump, sucking the water out of each tub after every rehearsal required 9 trips per tub to empty the ShopVac! Yowch – my back aches in sympathy with stage manager Laura Paduch and ASM Jeremy Loughton. I’m sure they bless Mike and the sump pump now.

life with more cowbell

When we enter the theatre, the three women are already onstage, splayed out in the semi-darkness in the three bathtubs. Drowned. The bathtubs emerge from jagged-toothed holes in the ground, yawned forth like coffins – each with a blank foot stone facing downstage. Vines snake around the shower plumbing above each tub. Beautiful white birch trees stand sentinel in the background. Silent witnesses.

The Drowning Girls, written by Beth Graham, Charlie Tomlinson and Daniela Vlaskalic, and directed for Alumnae Theatre Company by Taryn Jorgenson, opened last night in the studio space. The play is inspired by the real-life British murder case, dubbed The Brides in the Bath Case, which revealed how George Joseph Smith – under the guise of different names – married seven women between 1908 and 1914, swindling each of her savings and drowning three of the last four in the bath: Bessie, Alice and Margaret.


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Filed under 2012/13 Season, The Drowning Girls

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