I Am Queen Anne
I am Queen Anne is a one-woman show written and performed by Helen Raynham. The show follows a spunky and rebellious young girl as she attempts to become a powerful and notable woman in the modern day. She will crown herself Queen, and everyone is invited to her coronation. In this act of supreme autonomy she denounces the societal constraints against her and draws inspiration from the fates of past queens and political figures who broke the mould of the ‘perfect’ female and became powerful enough to change the world.
The show is played out using giant chess pieces and the strategies used in chess to illustrate points, as well as projections and an original song: The internet is a dangerous place for a woman. The Queen explains the rules of being a woman and shows you how others have played the game, warning of the opposition who is always a present threat that seeks to entrap her by using her sex against her. The Queen has one trick up her sleeve - she might be alone, but she's the most powerful piece on the board.
The show invites audiences to actively engage and discover what is expected of a modern woman and to explore the prejudices they still face – the fact that women are supposed to be domesticated as well as a working woman, that we still get taxed VAT for buying sanitary products and that we receive abuse from social media trolls relating to our sex.
The show was first performed at the Hen and Chickens, Highbury and Islington in August 2015 as part of the Camden Fringe.