Periods, however messy, painful and inconvenient, are a sign of health and fertility for billions of menstruators. Following research into the lack of understanding and education of the menstrual cycle – and female reproductive health as a whole – Leading Light Collective completed the first R&D stage of ‘Dear Mother Nature’ in the form of an online digital series, premiered in October 2020. We worked with 18 menstruators across multiple backgrounds to create a series of monologues, poems and spoken word pieces exploring their experiences with menstruation, contraception and reproductive education, alongside the racial, gender and socio-economic discrimination they have faced in direct relation to their periods. Our aim was to dispel taboo, raise awareness, and empower all menstruators. At the culmination of the first phase of the project, Dear Mother Nature raised £310 for ‘Ditch The Rag’; the equivalent of providing a ten-year period pack for each young menstruator in a secondary school class. For more information about Ditch The Rag visit www.ditchtherag.com.
Dear Mother Nature provides an insightful and unique opportunity to end the taboo against menstruation, and open up the conversation surrounding period poverty. In early 2021, we were awarded the Bread & Roses Theatre Emerging Company Award, for which we were offered funding and a space to continue the R&D for Dear Mother Nature, which took place in late March, and involved discussions, script work and character development with two of the original cast members.
We are delighted to announce that we have been awarded Arts Council England funding to progress to the next stage of our R&D of ‘Dear Mother Nature’, taking place at the end of August. We now strive to bring the project beyond its digital medium and into a full live production, and eventually onto the stage. The purpose of Dear Mother Nature is to educate and normalise the conversation surrounding menstruation and period poverty. The company intends to build on the partnership already created with period charity Ditch The Rag to develop school and community workshops to further inform young menstruators and to challenge the current statistics. We are ring-fencing a proportion of this funding to offer a £3,000 seed commission to a writer for this next stage.
This opportunity is open to anyone who menstruates, and/or has lived experience of menstruation.
– A seed commission for a treatment, and three five-minute monologues, which will be developed – with support – into two drafts of a 40 minute script.
– A week-long R&D of your work.
– Tailored dramaturgical advice and mentoring sessions with Macadie Amoroso.
– The opportunity to have your work professionally produced.
Monday 5th July, 12pm – submissions open
Monday 26th July, 12pm – deadline to apply
Friday 30th July – shortlisted applicants to be invited to interview
Tuesday 3rd and Thursday 5th August – interviews, with a possibility of a second interview on the morning of Friday 6th August
W/C 9th August – regular sessions between you and production team begin
W/C Monday 23rd August – R&D (five days), you will be required to attend two days in person.
Wednesday 30th September – 40 minute script deadline
You must be available for regular sessions from Monday 9th August, and to attend two R&D days in-person.
Please complete the submission form below, alongside uploading the following documents in PDF format ONLY:
– Your CV, with at least one professional credit (this does not have to only include writing credits).
– A completed copy of our equality form: DOWNLOAD EQUALITY FORM (or copy and paste https://bit.ly/36cp53f into your browser).
– A single A4 page, smallest font size of 11, responding to the stimulus of ‘an ode to your period or body’. This could be anything; a script, poem, rap, song, spoken word piece – you name it! Please include a title and page numbers, but please do NOT include your name on your piece. Alternatively, you are more than welcome to send us an audio or video recording of your submission. If you have any concerns regarding accessibility, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us and we’ll be more than happy to assist, and make appropriate arrangements.
The Pen to Period Seed Commission is now closed.
Thank you to all that applied, we have received over 100 applications and with a brilliant team of script readers we are looking forward to finding our Writer.
Applicants will know if successful through to the next round by Friday 30th July 2021