An exciting uplifting new play stuffed full of songs and laughs, heart and soul; telling the gripping real life story of the huge mill-workers strike in Lawrence, Massachusetts, USA in 1912.
20,000 workers originating from all corners of the globe, led mainly by the female workforce who fought not just for the bread for their daily existence, but also for the roses in order to live a full life – a fight that resonates and continues to this day.
Ian Kershaw’s new piece Bread & Roses features a mix of real and imagined characters. The story of Lucy-Rose Atkins as she navigates the strike, facing love, loss, lies and deceit, using her quick wit, impassioned heart and fierce intelligence to undertake a journey from unskilled worker to impassioned leader.
The strike was also famously known as ‘The Singing Strike’ and Bread & Roses uses songs from the time of the strike – mainly from the influential songwriter Joe Hill (who inspired countless other rebel voices from Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez to Bruce Springsteen and Billy Bragg). These are the songs that rouse rabbles, shake houses and lift roofs as Lucy-Rose Atkins leads her workers in their fight of their lives – a fight, not just for bread, but for roses too!
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