GirlPlay – Desire in Dialogue

A woman desires sex but doesn’t know how to get it. A woman desires a baby but doesn’t know why her body won’t cooperate. A woman desires something but doesn’t quite know what it is.
Girlplay | GTF
GirlPlay, written by Sarah Richardson, follows the character of Lucy as told and performed by three different actresses, each providing a voice, a facet, of her personality and how she views the world. The voices weave together like a vibrant, erotic tapestry to create sensations and feelings through tempo and rhyme.
At heart, GirlPlay is about the flame of desire, specifically how the simple things can ignite it, smother it, rekindle it. We hear from Lucy’s multiple perspectives as she ages and navigates her own sexuality in the world, how she defines and contrasts it through her various identities such as feminist, middle-class, girlfriend.
I was particularly struck in the show by the casting of three different actresses to
GirlPlay GTF

portray one character. At first, I was not sure how I felt about it, was this woman easily replaceable by any other woman? However, as the show progressed, I realized that by utilizing different voices, Richardson was highlighting the complexity, the contradictions, and the chaos of female desire. This desire helps her overcome her fears and insecurity, but it also binds her and makes her, in her own words, “addicted” in her quest to conceive a baby. If desire is a flame, it can also burn.
In addition, while the show was originally conceived for stage, I actually think it works far better as an audio poem. The words which express and conceal are given center stage, the audience allowed to sit back and soak in the dialogue, picking up on the clever rhymes and hidden heartbreak. Through the lack of visual stimulation we are better able to see Lucy, through the silences we can hear the pounding of desire.
GirlPlay will stream online at the Galway Theatre Festival on May 3rd at 6:00 PM. You can purchase tickets here:
GirlPlay was written by Sarah Richardson (The Rampant Collective) and performed by Martha Dunlea, Rachel O’Connell, and Sarah Richardson. The audio production was directed by Ciara Elizabeth Smyth, with sound design and engineering by Sam Hardiman, produced by Marisa Conroy. Visual design by Áine O'Hara. 

Blog post written by Laura Brincat, May 2nd, 2021.