Sherlock Holmes in A Scandal in Bohemia! London (2019)

I SAY, I SAY, I SAY! You can't do a play about Londoners set in London without bringing it home to Londontown, so that's exactly what we did in July and October 2019 while also receiving a OffCom Short Run Commendation in November 2019! Bringing the lights (and the tone) right down Edison bulb low to a knockabout, darker, dangerous Victorian gothic East End Music Hall pub brawl, drawing on Jack the Ripper and Sweeney Todd as inspiration, we welcomed audiences from Camden to Drury Lane with gin cocktails and pork pies before challenging them all to a battle of wits and a barney! Cross Mrs Hudson's palm with silver and dodge being in one of her famous pork pies in this rambuctious video.



More mugshots and all other photographic evidence in the rogues gallery, a raft of excited London audience feedback on our youtube channel, and some rather dashing reviews here:

Chapman, E. (2019) Sherlock Holmes in A Scandal in Bohemia by Francesca De Sica. Theatre, Films and Art Reviews, 4 November

Foster, I. (2019) Sherlock Holmes in A Scandal in Bohemia! (and other stories), Tristan Bates Theatre, There Ought To Be Clowns, 30 Oct

Khaos, M. (2019) Sherlock Holmes in a Scandal in Bohemia at the Tristan Bates Theatre. The Upcoming, Oct

Lilly, C. (2019) Struts and Frets Theatre Company present: Sherlock Holmes in A Scandal in Bohemia! The Stars Shine Still,1 Nov Porter, S. (2019) A Scandal in Bohemia!, Spy In The Stalls. 28 Oct

Ressort, S. (2019) A Scandal in Bohemia at the Tristan Bates Theatre, View From The Outside, 20 Oct 

Toledano, A. (2019) Sherlock Holmes in A Scandal in Bohemia! presented by Struts and Frets Theatre Company, Within Her Words, 31 Oct 



Head over to our Research and Development page to read more about the post-show Q&A we held for schools in October and the school workshops we led in December!


Sherlock Holmes in A Scandal in Bohemia! Karachi, Pakistan (2019)

ROLL UP! ROLL UP! For a 90-minute Victorian circus act called A Scandal in Bohemia! This fin-de-siècle merry-go-round is a rollercoaster ride of 6 women playing hundreds of characters while Holmes and Watson expose crimes, solve mysteries, cheat death and make it safely back home in time to feed the dog. Holmes takes on Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls, dodges and weaves with Lestrade and the bungling authorities in a boxing match, Mrs Hudson takes on the patriarchy in a Punch and Judy Show and Watson will yet again try peddling the Book of Life in his Music Hall market scene! Using music composed especially for the production, puppetry, magic and some questionable Victorian melodrama in a high-energy, physical, comedic pantomime, we also tackled the wider issues of fake news, feminism and sheer force of will as we flew through the legend of Irene Adler’s great escapade, bringing in some of Sherlock Holmes’ favourite other stories and characters. This production was specially commissioned for the British Council Pakistan in April 2019 as part of the #WoW Women of the World Festival and we enjoyed adapting and devising this piece, designing a portable set of costumes, props, lighting, sound and music to tackle political, social, historical and cultural issues for positive change. A trailer and interviews with the cast on how excited they were to be taking this project to Karachi, Pakistan in April 2019 can be found here! Watch some of the feedback on our shows at the British Council in Karachi from Actor and social activist Sheema Kirmani and owner of Tehrik e Niswan - Women's Development Through Theatre & Television; Actor Hina Khuwaja Bayat and Aurangzeb Siddique 

We also had the joy of being interviewed by Pakistani comedian Saad Haroon for Pakistani Radio CityFM89 with Michael Houlgate, Director of Sindh and Balochistan, British Council Pakistan and Francesca De Sica, Director of Struts and Frets and with actors Laura-Jean Richardson and Emily Swain, and Catherine Mobley, Joanne Sealey and Charlotte Mafham in April 2019 at the British Council Karachi, Pakistan and more photos from Karachi are over in our gallery!



"Actors on the (World) Stage" Workshops - Karachi, Pakistan (2019)

Following these performances, the audience was invited to join our workshops specially devised for our audience and participants, combining drama with social positive activism to make these games and exercises entertaining and educational. We guided groups of students excited and inspired by the themes raised and the performance itself on how to work together, take on many roles, collaborate and have fun to devise their own short piece to show their peers in a supportive environment. We then explored how to use and adapt these skills of collaborative and collective effort to work together, act, give voice to thoughts and ideas and effect social and positive change in their world. More photos, videos and feedback on our workshops, plus how we adapt them to you, on our Research and Development page.



The Tempest - Greece (2016)

Struts and Frets collaborated with another female theatre company Sea-Change Theatre Company to produce and perform in The Tempest at the Skala Women’s Festival at Eressos in a promenade production on the beautiful island of Lesbos. We were pleased to be amongst other international artists and collaborators as part of a festival exploring women in the arts, including film, theatre, music, dance, stand-up, drag kings, poetry, arts-as-activism and expression. We're also delighted to say we've kept in touch and worked again with some of the other festival participants and look forward to joining them again this year as part of their new projects, on this magical island in September 2020, in London in April 2021 and beyond. Meet the co-producing team by watching the following promotional video for The Tempest, which includes a short performance by the actor playing Caliban, interviews with the cast, the producer and the director. In it, they discuss their choice of play, location and casting. Visit our gallery for more photos!



Henry V: Agincourt 600 - Edinburgh Festival and London (2015)

Beowulf meets Scorsese, via the halls of Valhalla and Vietnam. For a good idea of the play, watch our first trailer here! This was very different retelling of one of the most popular monarchs, to commemorate the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt on St Crispin’s Day, 25th October 1415. (Second teaser trailer here!)  Our first production was a 16-strong all-female cast in a 90-minute, high energy performance involving physical theatre, polyphonic singing, fight sequences, fire-eating, stage combat (with real weapons – as demonstrated in our trailers!) and, of course, the Haka. Third and last teaser trailer here. The choice of making women tell a story about war was designed to empower women and girls and give them a voice on stage and in the world. This coincided with the decision to allow UK women on the frontline as we successfully proved that women can fight just as easily as men, amply demonstrated in our fight scenes, courtesy of the phenomenal training with fight directors Yarit Dor and Roger Bartlett. After an exhilarating preview run at the Edinburgh Festival in August, we performed in the hauntingly beautiful and therefore entirely appropriate Peckham Asylum Chapel in October 2015 replete with some exhilarating fire-eating training by the tantalising Trixi Tassels! For further information, read the interview with Struts and Frets Artistic Director for Female Arts on the background and inspirations for this production, visit our crowdfunding page and click here to meet some of the cast and hear their thoughts on Henry V. For more details on the formidable banshees that made up our "merry few" ahead over here and then here and visit our Henry V gallery for photos of this stunning and slightly terrifying production on the Royal Mile, Edinburgh and at the Peckham Asylum Chapel, London.



TranShakespeare Workshops - London (2015)

One of the most exciting and invaluable projects to undertake as we initiated this company and embarked on this theatrical journey was to be part of this Shakespeare and gender project, “TranShakespeare”. This was a truly collaborative and cross-Atlantic initiative between Lisa Wolpe of the Los Angeles Women’s Shakespeare Company, GAP Salon, King’s College London Shakespeare Centre and the Young Vic theatre. Over several days, a core company of actors, directors, dramaturgs, master teachers and observers explored, swapped and happily confused gender roles in Shakespeare’s work in an incredibly permissive, creative and dynamic environment. Culminating in several show-and-tell performances, this week long intensive was only the beginning of a long journey of discovery for many of us, and has happily resulted in many more collaborations amongst the participants (and now friends) as well as a continuing and introspective assessment of our own and gender roles in society. Please visit our Research and Development page to learn more about how we've incorporated drama, language, sociology and neurolinguistic programming into our own work, thanks to this workshop.