Review: Heroine – Theatr Clwyd
The Emlyn Williams was transformed into the set of Heroine ahead of Egwyl’s visit to Theatr Clwyd for a World Premier of Heroine.
By Emma Tattum, Egwyl Editor | @emmat1995
“Tell her that her mum, she was a heroine.”
As we entreated the Emlyn Williams Theatr, it felt as if we were walking into a real-life scenario. The scene was set in an old-fashioned style community centre created by Richard Kent, the show’s designer. Three characters were sat playing bingo and baking cakes as the audience poured in.
As the story began, we were introduced to Grace (Asmara Gabrielle), a former soldier who had been discharged from the Army. It was then we were introduced to Wendy (Lucy Thackeray), Beverley (Maggie McCarthy) and Cheryl (Wendy Morgan), three activist women who made it their personal mission to save their local community centre from being taken over and bought by a Saudi group and turned into a mosque.
Grace reluctantly becomes their friend, or as Beverley called them: “the far right calendar girls,” in a bid to save the centre.
It becomes a power struggle and the reasoning gets lost in the anger. There becomes an obvious divide between Grace and community centre leader, Wendy. Both powerful woman in their own rights. During an intense talk, secrets are revealed. Wendy used to be a member of the English Defence League (EDL) before she was beaten up for being a ‘racist,’ it was then she made it her personal mission to save her centre. As the women plot an undercover plan at an activist event in London, we learn that Grace has a baby daughter who is being brought up by her sister, Shelley (Hannah Traylen). This spurs Grace on and gives her a reason, a hope, a will to continue with her mission.
This production is not scared to shock and, although it was an uncomfortable watch at times, the powerful message really hits home. An already on edge Grace quickly turns her anger and sadness into violence with her at the centre of it all.
It has it all: shock, sadness, humour and “bants” but, perhaps most shocking, real-life events. Heroine is running until November 4, ticket information and details can be found here.
Grace – Asmara Gabrielle
Wendy – Lucy Thackeray
Beverley – Maggie McCarthy
Cheryl – Wendy Morgan
Shelley – Hannah Traylen
Director : Stephen Atkinson