Now You See Me

By Carly Halse

The “hidden story” of Ruth Ellis, the last woman to be hanged in Britain. The year was 1955 and Ruth Ellis openly admitted to killing her lover David Blakely who she gunned down at the Magdala pub in London in 1953. What is little know though is that Blakely was violent and controlling. A few days before the murder he had brutally beaten Ruth and she suffered a miscarriage. At a time when she needed support and help her close male friend, Desmond Cussen, gave her a gun, showed how to use it and drove her to the Magdala pub. Yet he was never called to account. Her case led to changes in the law recognising the defence of “diminished responsibility”.

Part of our “Hidden Stories” series

Just to say how amazing the 4 pieces last night were. Brilliantly directed in their minimal style it brought us in at the right times and gave space to the character when needed.

I was especially impressed with Lisa and her story (knowing her for many years I was shocked and this could truly transpose to the small screen as a 3 part drama!) and also Carly’s piece as this strong confident woman who just crumbled by the end.

Congratulations on keeping live theatre going in MK. And continuing with relevant, interesting, up to date and thought provoking work.

Each playlet had its own specialness.

Last night I attended the performance of Hidden Stories at MK Gallery with friends. It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening and I came away learning a lot from all the various short plays. However, the one that really got me was the first one ‘The Saltiness of Time’ as up until recently I was one of those women who was juggling care for my father, professional life plus three teenagers, so it really hit home.

The best thing I can say is that when I got home described all four stories to my teenage daughter, she was interested in all but especially ‘ Peidi’ took her interest and she said she wanted to come to the next one.

Thank you for doing this.

Having seen Lisa’s post, sounds like you did a great job. Well done! I think you bring something truly unique and valuable to the MK theatre scene.

Thank you for a thought provoking, and at times moving, evening. Xx

Four well written, acted and thought provoking plays. Looking forward to Hidden Stories 2.

Thanks Rosemary and all the wonderful actors. What a great set of plays. My daughter and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Wonder if filmed versions would be possible.

Very well written scripts, interwoven with common themes that linger continuously over time. Each strong performance resonated in different ways. It held my attention, was quite moving to watch at times and thought provoking. It certainly felt like a platform for even more to come from your theatre. It worked really well.

Thanks for a stimulating evening focusing on the hidden stories of women and issues of expectations, voice, and power. They are in our past, our present, but should not be our future. Great to be back in live theatre which challenges us.

Now You See Me

Now You See Me Photos by Simon Raynor
Now You See Me Photos by Simon Raynor
Now You See Me Photos by Simon Raynor