“RashDash are the punk princesses of late-night theatre” The Guardian, 2014

Rash Dash image 1 - compressedRashDash founding members Abbi Greenland and Helen Goalen and producer and director Charlotte Bennett, create and perform new, bold and exciting contemporary theatre that combines movement, music and text.

Their projects are entirely collaborative. Each RashDash show is a combination of artists with different skills and expertise which in the past has included musicians, actors, dancers, directors, writers, dramaturges and designers.

Their work celebrates and centres around the skills of the performer and the body and the surprising discoveries made when they take big risks.

As Abbi says

“Our work is about ideas, feeling and sensations, about what it feels to be angry and alive, full of fire, fury and joy. We focus on making work about female experiences and telling stories with powerful, complex female characters.”

Artistic Directors and performers Abbi and Helen formed the company in 2009. They won two Scotsman Fringe-First Awards in 2010 and 2011, The Tods Murrays Musical awards for Best Book and Innovation in Musical Theatre 2011, and were nominated for the Total Theatre Award for Innovation and Experimentation 2012. RashDash have produced/co- produced five full-length productions: Another Someone (Edinburgh Fringe Festival and tour), Scary Gorgeous (Edinburgh Fringe Festival), The Ugly Sisters (Edinburgh fringe Festivaland national tour), Oh, I Cant Be Bothered (Soho Theatre, West Yorkshire Playhouse and Sunderland Stages), We Want You To Watch (National Theatre co- production and national tour) as well as two outdoor commissions from the Lyric Hammersmith, Watford Imagine, Greenwich Docklands International Festival and Latitude Festival; SET FIRE TO EVERYTHING!!!and The Frenzy. RashDash is an associate company at West Yorkshire Playhouse.

Fully open to suggestions and partnerships across the academic spectrum, RashDash is exploring ideas for a new piece of work that might appeal particularly to academics who have expertise in gender, violence, dynamics of public space or psychology.

The work is to be developed for Leeds Transform Festival 2017, about violence against women on the streets. The piece will focus specifically on violent acts committed against women in public spheres and the subsequent impact on women’s psychology and the creation of accepted societal norms e.g women should not walk home alone at night. The piece will look specifically at Leeds but will also have a global focus – taking stories from India and potentially extending to other South Asian countries.

Abbi, Helen and Charlotte think working with academics to develop this project will deepen the research process and take them in some different and unexpected directions. Introducing an academic strand into our research process is something they are looking to do more of in their work, which often stems from a theme they are passionate about exploring.

As Abbi says:

“We would love to explore and understand the outlook and experience of women in Leeds on the subject. We would like to explore the history of Leeds university and the city of Leeds during the time of the Yorkshire ripper.  But we are open to suggestions!”

Just a few of their recent projects: –

Snow White Rose Red
A music filled family Christmas show for ages 5+

We Want You to Watch
A show about two women on a quest to end pornography, made in collaboration with writer Alice Birch for the National Theatre, culminating in a national tour.

Oh, I Cant be Bothered
A show made for Soho Theatre pitting monogamy and marriage against individual choice and alternative living.

The Ugly Sisters
A cabaret theatre piece retelling a modern ‘Cinderella’ from The Ugly Sisters’ perspective.

The Frenzy
An outdoor physical/musical show inspired by The Bacchae, commissioned by Lyric Hammersmith and a number of outdoor theatre festivals.