Whats Her Face Productions are an exciting and innovative new theatre company. What makes them special you ask? Well the fact that it is an all female company who are breaking boundaries left, right and stage centre. We spoke to co-founder Emma Richardson who told us more about Whats Her Face Productions.
Tell us about your businesses. What do you do? What did inspire you to start?
Our name is What’s Her Face Productions, and we’re a female led theatre company formed by Paloma Oakenfold and Emma Richardson. We produce, write, act in and direct plays -not always at the same time… but more often than not. We were inspired to start the company because we wanted to make projects happen ourselves. Thinking ‘I could do that’ turned into ‘I should do that’. We’ve worked with some incredible female talent in the past, directors actors and producers, and were inspired to take on a male dominated industry with our own four, imperfectly manicured hands.
What is innovative / unique about what you do?
We’re passionate about making this business enjoyable. For ourselves, for the people we work with, and for our audiences. Something which, surprisingly, isn’t always the case. We work with a lot of new writing and unknown actors and actresses, in up and coming theatres and venues, because generally, that’s all a bit more exciting.The name What’s Her Face came from our all too typical experience of feeling like anonymous/faceless actors, and that’s something that we aim to change. With our cast, with our audiences and our stories, it’s all VERY personal. We want to get inside real people with real problems, but make sure it’s served with a slice of magic too. Our plays sometimes have unicorns in them.
Tell us a bit more about your current project?
We’re currently working on the new musical Out of Order by Gee Spazzo which will run from 15th till 26th April 2014 at The Courtyard Theatre. Out Of Order is a story about life and love on the streets. It uncovers the bottom of the pile, focusing on a group of friends, whose lives revolve around drugs and the means of getting them; who have their own outlook and loyalty and who find their laughs where they can. Co-defendants, Lily and Leo, return to the old gang after six months in prison feeling estranged and unsure of their relationship. Their intention to change their ways is met by incomprehension and comes under immediate assault. The musical derives from the author’s years working with rehabilitation of drug users in resettlement projects, community drug teams and in prisons; the affection as well as the frustration he felt for his clients. It’s an incredibly important piece of work, not only because of the fascinating insight of the author, and his personal connection to the subject matter, but also because we feel a real responsibility to tell the story truthfully, to respect the people who inspired the story with their real lives.
Who/what are your favourite CEOs/Businesses in Shoreditch?
The Courtyard is a hugely inspiring venue for new work, music, creativity and emerging theatre companies. They provide a central location in one of the most exciting areas of London, a fantastic hub of creativity. Plus they’re hosting our musical, so they’ve obviously also got impeccable taste. The wine list is also fab.
What are your favourite places in Shoreditch?
I’m a big fan of cake. The Ruby Cafe has EXCELLENT cake.
What does the future have in store for your business?
We’re really enjoying where the company is headed. We’ve been offered a slot at the Stratford Upon Avon fringe festival, and we’ve got several exciting projects in the pipeline for 2014, including a couple of all female projects. The sisters really are doing it for themselves.