Band Of Mothers
Frustrated by the challenges of trying to balance the demands of motherhood with the unpredictable and often unforgiving nature of the performing arts industry, we group of Artist Mothers decided to take matters into our own hands. With wonderful support from Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, we meet regularly to reconnect and reignite our artistic muscles and voices. Our first performance was on the Globe stage in 2019, performing sonnets re-imaged from the perspective of a mother’s love, and our children were on stage with us. We harness the creative power of motherhood, and allow it to inform our creative work. We have nannies on site when we work, and our children pop in for a cuddle or to watch our work. It feels like a win-win for us, and we have found tremendous strength, understanding and camaraderie in our group to be able to support each other to do our best work.
In one of our early meetings, I asked our mother artists the question: “What role would you like to play now, because you are a mother?”. This prompted a new perspective of thought and discussion about how we can harness our motherhood as a tremendous strength and asset, rather than seeing it as limiting and complicated. Many spoke of the special emotional insights they would now bring to their artistic work as mothers. We have as a group become quickly bound by our shared understanding, generosity and support for one another. Our children come to meetings and we organise childcare on site to play with them, or they join in on the chats, cuddles and exercises.
Since the beginning of the 2020 Lockdown, we have continued our creative connection online, running regular workshops on zoom and allowing access to even more of our members. Our sessions were a life line for many of us, as we came together to connect, create and fathom these strange and challenging times together as a company of artist mothers. We are now looking forward to starting our Autumn Project 'When did we stop painting rainbows?' which will blend work with some Shakespeare's texts, with verbatim work to explore our experience of living through a pandemic.
Check out some of the content we created during lockdown:
Following our first performance at the Globe in September 2019, we were inspired to develop our ensemble even further, and engaged in three months of creative workshops. So far, we have been inspired, engaged and challenged by a wonderful range of workshop leaders including: Federay Holmes (Associate Artist, The Globe), Kasia Zaremba-Byrne (Movement) Kathy Taylor-Jones (Composer and MD), Ingrid Mackinnon (Movement Director), Morgan Lloyd Malcolm (Playwright). There is an extraordinary power and camaraderie in our group, the shared experience of being both mothers and artists has enabled us to connect deeply and quickly.
If you are interested in joining us please email
Listen to Emma talking about Band Of Mothers from 27:32