Propeller 2021

The Propeller programme at The North Wall provides practical support for the development of exciting new work which begins its life in Oxfordshire, supporting brilliant companies and artists in the region who deserve to have their work seen by a wider audience.

Originally selected as the Propeller Platform production for 2020, and postponed until 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic, Zena Forster’s after birth is a story of recovery.

Holiday camp entertainer Ann and the Virgin Mary have been detained without trial on a medieval plague island in the middle of the Venetian Lagoon.  Buffoonish and malevolent by turns, their doctors are intent on curing them of their heinous crime – Being A Bad Mum.   This is the world of Ann’s mind.  after birth’s protagonist is experiencing postpartum psychosis after the birth of her baby.

Playwright Zena Forster said; “Just as the women I interviewed didn’t want to be defined by their illness, so after birth isn’t a play about psychosis, it’s a play about a tough, witty woman who happens to have psychosis.  The women I interviewed were amazing – courageous, inspirational and often very funny, it was natural that my protagonist was like that too.”

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