St Hilda's Feminist Salon hosted by Winsome Pinnock
What happened at the event
The first Salon of Michaelmas Term 2018 was hosted by Winsome Pinnock, award-winning playwright, academic and dramaturg. Winsome was the first black British female playwright to have a play produced by the National Theatre. Most recently a revival of her 1987 play, Leave Taking, played at the Bush Theatre to critical and commercial success. Her award-winning plays include The Wind of Change (Half Moon Theatre), Leave Taking (Liverpool Playhouse Studio, National Theatre, Bush Theatre), Picture Palace (Women's Theatre Group), A Hero's Welcome (Women's Playhouse Trust at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs), A Rock in Water (Royal Court Young People's Theatre at the Theatre Upstairs), Talking in Tongues (Royal Court Theatre Upstairs), Mules (Clean Break Theatre Company) and One Under (Tricycle Theatre). Winsome has also written for radio and television.
Winsome's discussant was JC Niala – an award winning stage and screen writer. Her play Unsettled is due for release by Methuen in Spring 2019 forms part of a collection of contemporary African women Playwrights . It is the second collection of African Women Playwrights ever to be published. JC is an Honorary Research Fellow at the department of Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Warwick where she is also community manager of the African Women Playwright’s Network. JC Niala is reading for a DPhil in Anthropology at St. Catherine’s College, University of Oxford. Find her on Twitter @jcniala
The Salon was held in St Hilda's College Senior Common Room and sold out in advance. JC asked Winsome about her childhood, her writing process, breaking into theatre, her influences, and her experiences of working in British theatre. Winsome was a gracious and thoughtful host, who spoke very openly about her life and work. A lively question and answer session continued over dinner in St Hilda's for the guest speakers and the student organisers of the Salon.