Ever since its debut performance in Cumbernauld in 1991, the popularity of Bold Girls has snowballed, becoming a central piece of Scottish theatre. With just over a week until we open our reimagined production, join us in looking through snapshots of the play’s history in Cumbernauld and further afield.
In 1991 Cumbernauld Theatre Trust was reaching its third decade living in a row of eighteenth-century cottages. The venue had become the regular home for the works of well-known figures from the world of theatre and music who were renowned for developing distinctly political works. These artists included the legendary 7:84 company who, under the direction of Lynne Parker, first staged Rona Munro’s Bold Girls at the Cottage Theatre. It starred Andrea Irvine, Paula Hamilton, Joyce McBrinn and Julia Dearden.
Rona Munro’s ear for the authentic cut and thrust of Belfast’s unsung heroines is sharp, abrasive and at times downright painful … it is also celebratory and funny.Daily Mail, 1991
Touring Scotland that same year, it also appeared at London’s Hampstead Theatre with a cast including Imelda Staunton and Catherine Cusack. Rona Munro won the Evening Standard’s Most Promising Playwright Award and the Susan Smith Blackburn Award in 1991, and the play eventually became part of the Scottish school curriculum. In later years Bold Girls was staged throughout Scotland, London, Melbourne and USA (Sacramento and Los Angeles). It returned to its original home in Cumbernauld in a 1999 production at Cumbernauld Theatre directed by then-Artistic Director Simon Sharkey. The play was more recently performed in 2018 at the Citizens Theatre, Glasgow, led by Richard Baron.
Set in West Belfast during the Troubles in 1991. Marie, Cassie, and Nora are determined to get on with their lives despite the bombs, the soldiers, and their husbands being either locked away or killed. That is, until a mysterious young woman turns up on Marie’s doorstep, disrupting their girls’ night out and bringing devastating revelations that threaten to leave their friendships changed forever. Sharply funny, moving, yet never shying from the harsh realities of life during the Troubles, Bold Girls is a celebration of women’s strength under siege.
It was the product of a lot of whiskey, a lot of laughs and a score of stories … I don’t think the battles women fight, or the daily struggles they have in much of Belfast, are particularly different from those in any other area with bad housing or high unemployment – except that guns make a difference to everything. But this isn’t a story about guns. It’s the story of four bold women.Rona Munro
Photographs (in order):
Highlights of the season include:
• Two new Cumbernauld Theatre co-productions: Sonata, a unique fusion of classical music and dance with Dunedin Consort and award-winning choreographer Marc Brew, and the revival of modern Scottish classic Tally’s Blood for a first Scottish tour in twenty years
• The premiere of a magical family show taking to the stage this Christmas: Ugly! A Cinderella Story by Gary McNair
• Exciting visiting theatre from some of Scotland’s leading companies, including Moorcroft, Battery Park, Sex Education Xplorers (S.E.X.)
• Live music as Lanternhouse welcomes legendary musical guests including Dougie MacLean, Aly Bain & Phil Cunningham
25 May 2023
Twenty years after it was last seen in full-scale production, Cumbernauld Theatre Company, The Gaiety Ayr and Perth Theatre are combining to present a brand-new tour of Ann Marie Di Mambro’s modern Scottish classic ‘Tally’s Blood’.
25 Apr 2023
We’ve got some exciting news to share! This year we’re presenting two brand-new festive productions in our Main Auditorium and Studio Theatre. Tickets will be on sale from Friday 31 March, but you can secure your tickets now by becoming a Friend.
24 Mar 2023