The 1970s - Women

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In addition to International Women’s Day, NT supported the Women’s Abortion Action Campaign, and Women in Solidarity for Peace.

The Disorderly Women adapted from The Bacchae and updated with references to Women’s Liberation (plus hallucogenic drugs and the Charles Manson murders) was staged in 1971. A gory show, a big budget item was a bottle of “blood” a week. Its cast included Kai Tai Chan who in 1973 co-devised Dance Exploration.

A stylised blend of dance and drama, its most moving piece was “Four Women” with words by Jean-Claude van Itallie. Costumes ranged from topless to long-john leotards with rumpled underwear showing through. Kai Tai Chan later founded the One Extra Dance Company.

The hardships endured by women convicts transported to Australia was the subject of Steve Gooch’s Female Transport, its cast including Jan Punch and its leg irons fashioned by the blacksmith at Old Sydney Town where it was performed on Australia Day 1976.


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