Inside the Rehearsals of… Dames at the Pleasance Theatre

Opening at the Pleasance Theatre on the 17th April, rehearsals for Jamie Garven’s production of Charlotte Merriam’s debut play have begun. Here’s a glimpse of what has been happening. 

Dames Rehearsal - Courtesy of Arabella Neale (2) Arabella Neale.JPG
(c)Arabella Neale. 

It’s 2am on some idle Friday. Six women collide in the only place for honesty… a club toilet. Dames tells the story of six dysfunctional millennials struggling to make sense of the world beyond the bog. Dive into a cubicle of inebriated women drowning in their own word-vomit.

The world premiere of Charlotte Meriam’s play will offer a glimpse into the shambolic honesty of a world where the rules of civility are suspended.

Jamie Garven’s production is set to star: Ellie Heydon (Harlots, HULU/ITV; A Night in Hatton Gardens, Working Title Feature; Growth, The Gate Theatre), Olivia Elsden (Sket, The Park Theatre; Doc Martin, ITV; Blood, The Other Room), Charlotte Merriam (Off their Rockers, ITV; Swansong, Edinburgh Fringe and Arcola Theatre; Under My Thumb, Greenwich Theatre), Arabella Neale (The Red Barn, National Theatre; A Very English Scandal, BBC; Ring Ring, The Gate Theatre), Bianca Stephens (Always Orange, RSC; Julius Caesar, Storyhouse Chester; The Great Austerity Debate, Menagerie Theatre) and Melanie Stevens (Golf Course War Machine, UK tour; Frozen, The Other Room; Lear in the Memorandum, Big Loop Theatre).

Dames Rehearsal - Courtesy of Arabella Neale (4) Olivia Elsden and Ellie Heydon.JPG
(c) Arabella Neale. 

Writer and actor Charlotte Meriam said: “Dames is about trying to figure out the meaning of life, the point of it all. It’s the bizarre, vibrant, surreal conversation that can only happen in the loo at 2am on a night out. This is a play to make you laugh and cry, love your friends all the more, and make you consider the anxiety and boundaries which block real honesty.”

Dames Rehearsal - Courtesy of Arabella Neale (5) Ellie Heydon and director Jamie Garven.JPG
(c)Arabella Neale. 

The production features set and costume design by April Dalton, sound by Joshua Bowles and lighting by Ryan Joseph Stafford. It is produced by Siberian Lights and Rachel Kraftman Productions.

Dames will play at the Pleasance Theatre from the 17th to the 29th April. For more information visit:

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