Tower Theatre Podcast

5 Women – Now & Then

A three-part audio drama

“We are able to see the kind of existence that women of this unfortunate class are compelled to live. It has solved the problem of clearing the East End of its vicious inhabitants.”

Created during the Covid lockdowns, 5 Women Now & Then, is a brand-new, female-led, three-part audio drama that questions how much has really changed for women over the last 200 years. Beautifully told as a series of interwoven stories, a tapestry of rich narrative is juxtaposed with piano-driven bar songs, spoken word, cello composition, and evocative sound design.
Originally conceived in 2019 as a stage play the evolution of the piece to audio was not only a practical necessity but is a profound statement in making the inaudible audible. 5 Women Now & Then gives flesh to the lives of women buried by the history books, but is framed against a contemporary lockdown.

For the best listening experience we recommend the use of headphones. 

WARNING: Contains content some listeners may find distressing.

Episode One. Ines, Kate and Annie

Ines : Deborah Ross
Kate : Lynne Davis
Annie : Vyvian Shaw.
Narrator : Rosanna Preston.

Other parts were played by Bea Collett Bell, Stephen Brasher, Colin Guthrie, Arabella Hornby, Martin South and members of the company.

The music was written and performed by Rosie Hayes, Kasia Sikora Black, Bea Collett Bell and Colin Guthrie.

Listen Here!

Episode Two. Cathy, Mary Jane, Elizabeth and Lily

Cathy : Bea Collett Bell
Mary Jane : Bea Collett Bell
Elizabeth : Deborah Ross
Lily : Arabella Hornby
Narrator : Rosanna Preston

Other parts were played by Stephen Brasher, Lynne Davis, Colin Guthrie, Vyvian Shaw, Martin South and members of the company.

The music was written and performed by Rosie Hayes, Kasia Sikora Black, Bea Collett Bell and Colin Guthrie

Listen Here!

Five Women - Now and Then

Episode Three. Polly, Jem and Jeannie

Polly : Arabella Hornby
Jem : Lynne Davis
Jeannie : Vyvian Shaw
Narrator : Rosanna Preston

Other parts were played by Bea Collett Bell, Stephen Brasher, Colin Guthrie, Deborah Ross, Martin South and members of the company.
The music was written and performed by Rosie Hayes, Kasia Sikora Black, Bea Collett Bell and Colin Guthrie

Listen Here!

  • Annie

Written by Lucy Moss and Angharad Ormond
Director – Angharad Ormond
Assistant Director – Sarah Relton
Musical Director – Rosie Hayes
Sound Design – Colin Guthrie
Cover art by Arabella Hornby @artbybeana
Publicity photos by Allan Hart

Deborah RossDeborah Ross (Rothfield) marks her return to Tower Theatre after a long absence, before which she performed in Tower Theatre’s female version of The Odd Couple. She is thrilled to have been involved in 5 Women - Now & Then, with the expert guidance of Angharad Ormond, Lucy Moss and the rest of the cast and crew. Deborah acted in repertory companies in Melbourne, Australia and Nairobi, Kenya, in productions including The Birthday Party, The Merchant of Venice and Macbeth. A former City lawyer, Deborah is a financial and professional services Senior PR Director, focusing on financial inclusion in Africa.

Lynne DavisLynne Davis is an artist and engineer based in Waterfall Country, Wales. Her work aims to conjure human wildness as a tool for transformation - challenging the narratives that hold us from our fullest authentic expressions such that we may organise in common. Her work has features on BBC TV and Radio, independent podcasts and documentaries and in festivals and events internationally. Lynne joined the Tower Theatre in February 2020 as part of the 5 Women - Now & Then cast.

Vyvian ShawVyvian Shaw joined the Tower in 1993 and has appeared in several musicals including The Wind in the Willows and The Producers, both taken to the Minack Theatre in Cornwall. She returned to her acting roots last year playing Sally in Escaped Alone.

Rosanna PrestonRosanna Preston appeared as Mrs. Jarrett in the Tower's recent production of Escaped Alone, her fifth acting role at the Tower Theatre after joining the company for Henry V. Rosanna has since played Mrs Higgins in Pygmalion, Edith in Rules for Living and Christabel in Census Night. Rosanna also acted in and directed performances during the Virtual Tower seasons. Elsewhere Rosanna helped to create and performed in This Play Will Solve Climate Change (White Bear Theatre and City Lit) and has played at Theatro Technis, Baron’s Court Theatre and other venues. Rosanna directed Visitors for the Woodhouse Players and Hard to Find for Stokey Lit Fest and recently filmed the role of Charlotte in the TV series Psyched (in production).

Arabella HornbyArabella Hornby has been a member of the Tower since 2018. She has taken part in The Canterbury Tales, and two short plays during the Love and Survival Festival and is shortly to appear in Shakers. Prior to working at the Tower, she has worked as a professional immersive theatre actress for the company Secret Cinema, as well as producing and starring in a production of Constellations at the Hen and Chickens Theatre in London. Alongside acting, Bella is currently training to become an art teacher at Goldsmiths.

Angharad OrmondAngharad Ormond is Co-Artistic Director of the Tower Theatre and also works as a Clinical Psychologist in the NHS. Her online production of Metamorphosis (in Lockdown) received an OffWestEnd OnComm nomination and was a finalist in the Most Innovative Production category of the Scenesaver Birthday Honours List.

Lucy MossLucy Moss has been acting with the Tower Theatre since her debut as Irina in The Seagull in 2018. She has expanded her repertoire to include writing (The Canterbury Tales, Five Women), and she has recently directed Baby Dolls for the Company. Lucy lives close to the theatre, and when not acting, directing, or rehearsing, she can be found helping with Front of House for shows, which is the 4th most fun thing you can do for your local theatre!

Colin GuthrieColin Guthriehas been a member of the Tower Theatre since 1984 and has acted, directed, musical directed, designed sound and composed music for many shows. He musical directed The Producers in 2014, which played at the Bridewell Theatre in London and the Minack Theatre in Cornwall, and won the prestigious Minack Trophy that season. Colin worked for BBC radio for 30 years, mainly with Radio Drama. He worked as a sound engineer and editor on countless projects, including the Renaissance Theatre Shakespeare productions with Kenneth Branagh, the improvised The Masterson Inheritance, providing live sound effects on stage, and he was the senior sound balancer and editor for many classic serials including The Far Pavilions, The Count of Monte Cristo, Lord of the Flies and Our Mutual Friend. As a director he worked on many productions, including Fortunes of War, The Brothers Karamazov, Daunt and Dervish and Highlites. He adapted and directed the first radio production of Peter Nichols’ Passion Play.