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White Roses in the Big Apple

  • Date: 17 November 2009
  • Area: North
The Silver Dress Woman Doesn’t Worry or Care

The Silver Dress Woman Doesn’t Worry or Care. Credit: Photo: Rachel Howfield Massey

Audiences in New York will be enjoying work made in Yorkshire over the next two months.

Stephen Joseph Theatre's production of Alan Ayckbourn's My Wonderful Day is playing as part of the critically acclaimed Brits Off Broadway Festival, while Holmfith-based visual artist Rachel Howfield is showing work in a major group exhibition in Brooklyn.

My Wonderful Day, which received its world premiere at the Stephen Joseph Theatre in October, opened at the 59E59 Theater on 11 November and runs until 13 December.

The play provides a wonderfully uncluttered view of the adult world through a child's eye, as she writes a school essay at home while watching the day's events unfold around her. Following its appearance in New York, the play tours the UK.

The annual Brits Off Broadway Festival includes seven diverse pieces this year. Alan Ayckbourn will also be taking part in an 'In Conversation' event as part of the Festival.

Huddersfield visual artist Rachel Howfield's video The Silver Dress Woman Doesn't Worry or Care is showing as part of the exhibition Mother/Mother at the A.I.R. Gallery from 2 December 2009 until 3 January 2010.

Her work will also be shown in a New York cinema on 12 December as part of a screening and she is facilitating a discussion event at the gallery, APT- NY, exploring issues faced by artist-parents.

Mother/Mother, curated by Jennifer Wroblewski, features work by women and men made during a pregnancy, or within five years of the birth of the artist's child. The work does not specifically need to be about parenting or childbirth. The curator's interest is in work that was made during the same period as when the artist was also engaged with the thrills and problems of parenting.

Rachel's video, which was edited by Lucy Barker, was first shown as part of What the Chambermaid Saw projected in a window of The Grand Hotel, Scarborough, in February 2009.

Her trip to New York is the conclusion of a research and development project supported by an Arts Council England, Yorkshire Grants for the arts award.

Rachel Howfield said: 'This funding has given me so much more than I'd ever imagined – an incredible year of accelerated progress – not always easy to maintain alongside my role as a mother, but ultimately rewarding. The networking and research in New York will significantly inform and develop my artistic progress.'

Commenting on the play showing in New York, Stephen Wood, Executive Director, Stephen Joseph Theatre, said: 'We're delighted to be invited back to Brits Off Broadway for this, our third visit, particularly so as for the first time audiences in New York will be getting a chance to see our production immediately after its run in Scarborough and before it tours in the UK in Spring 2010.'

For more information click on the following links:
Stephen Joseph Theatre

Brits Off Broadway
Rachel Howfield
A.I.R. Gallery