In 1975 Richard Stourac and I left Red Ladder and with their support founded Broadside Mobile Workers’ Theatre. Based in London, we toured England, Scotland and Wales with a repertoire of plays that responded to important issues facing working people. Trade unionists suggested subject matter, contributed ideas and stories, and offered critiques. They organised tours, put us up in their homes, and even helped design our portable stage. Our plays about women, race, the Portuguese revolution and apartheid in South Africa appealed to solidarity campaigns, students and community organisations as well as the labour movement. We tried to create work that would entertain and move, but which would also be thought-provoking and would encourage our audiences to express themselves and take part in discussions after the performances. I continued to perform, while taking on more of the writing and directing.
Here’s an account of our work in pdf format which can also be found on the Unfinished Histories webpage about Broadside. My thanks to Unfinished Histories for initiating this valuable archive, and especially Dr Susan Croft, who interviewed me for the Broadside page, and Sara Scalzotto who collaborated with me and other members in writing it.
Here’s a list of the plays we made.