Theatre Royal Associate Artists Danusia Iwaszko and Lucinda Meredith have been working together with Bury St Edmunds Women’s Aid (The Refuge) to create and hold a series of writing workshops; using the tools of theatre to help women to express their stories, thoughts and concerns. Alchemy is the developed work of these women and will be presented as script in hand readings. Generated through a residency at Women’s Aid Bury St Edmunds new Resource Centre, the work will perform to sector staff, policy makers and students – the support staff of the future, social care students including midwives, nurses, social work staff and students.

It continues to be a joy and inspiration to work with the women currently residing at the refuge and through their outreach program as well as dedicated staff, including Suffolk Community Foundation, all of whom have contributed to the evolution of this relationship.

Associate Artist and playwright Danusia Iwaszko talks about the project; “As well as developing writing and dialogue skills as the women revisit their stories, we are also exploring other issues around domestic abuse like Gas lighting and coercive control and the affects of such things on the women’s self esteem. As well as the pain of revisiting the stories the sessions have laughter and a real sense of support as the women share their stories and realise they’re not alone, others have experienced similar events.”

“A powerful and moving evening. These voices need to be heard”

Alchemy is the ancient art of turning base metal into gold and the Women’s Refuge Writers’ Group have been turning their painful stories into valuable work which they want to share with you. This is a performance of work from the voices of experts by experience; women who are, or have been, in refuge. They are survivors of domestic abuse.