Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from all of The Roaring Girls!

2020 wasn’t exactly what everyone planned… but we’re hopeful for bigger, bolder, and brighter things in the future. So we’d like to share with you our thoughts on the good bits of 2020, and what we’re looking forward to in the coming year.

One huge highlight of 2020 for us here at Roaring Girls HQ has been working with our newly appointed board, and with an amazing team of freelancers – so we’ve asked them to lend us their thoughts too!

Lizi – Co-Artistic Director of The Roaring Girls

-What was your highlight of 2020?

Having the opportunity to work with some awesome people – I’m incredibly proud that our team was able to persevere and spend time on developing ourselves and our practice – and we got to get together and play! Our R&D over the summer, collaborating with fabulous creatives, and all the support our little family offered each other throughout this year have been fantastic.

-What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020?

Bras.

(Or at least feeling I always need to wear a bra. Screw that.)

-What're you looking forward to in 2021? Any resolutions?

I’ve just moved into a new flat, so I’m looking forward to getting settled in (aka finishing unpacking all my boxes, and finally getting the internet connected…)! No resolutions from me, but I do want to be a little kinder to myself, and am looking forward to new growth and new opportunities.

Lydia – Associate Roaring Girl

-What was your highlight of 2020?

My highlight(s) of 2020 (really sorry can’t decide) were moving into my own house with my other half after 2 years’ long distance and finding out my episode of Holby City’s going to be on the telly.

-What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020?

My trackies. Praying 2021 will be the year of in-person work meetings and glam social events.

-Any resolutions?

Say YES to (almost) everything. Mate’s pub theatre show in Manchester? Birthday party on a Sunday night? I am THERE. I’d also love to start playing football again. Played a few games pre-lockdown and it’s the single, one-and-only time in my life I’ve found exercise fun.


Sian– Chair of The Roaring Girls’ Board

-What was your highlight of 2020?

When my mum and dad visited in the garden and it rained, so we put the tent awning up.

-What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020?

My eye skin complaint. It just arrived this year and makes these horrible red marks under my eyes.

-Any resolutions?

Talk less, smile more.



Emmy – Co-Composer/Musical Director for The Period Project

-What was your highlight of 2020?

I think the highlight for me this year has been *actually* starting to write (not just talk about) my first play. It's taken several attempts to get here, and anyone who knows me will know I'm a master of the first 7 pages (actually, that's ambitious. My average is possibly 4.) But I feel like being given the sweet mixture of humility and an infinite amount of time has meant I've well and truly taken the plunge. I already have no job! In fact, my livelihood is now so 'unviable' it's part of a government-funded advertisement to deter the general public from pursuing elusive careers in the arts - so what better time to pick up a pen, in true defiance, and write about the Queer South-Walian experience? -What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020? Mediocre coffee. If this year has made me realise anything, it's how much of my precious income I spend on bang-average coffees. That £3.20 rush through London Bridge...the late-night watery Costa-machine coffee in the WHSmith's of a service station...even the pre-audition 'Greggs Americano will have to do' - you know what I'm talking about. Call me radical, but I'm ready to commit to better quality caffeine, small business caffeine, 'this is genuinely worth a couple of quid' caffeine with the time to sip and enjoy the simplicity of a warm KeepCup between my hands! -What're you looking forward to in 2021? Any resolutions? I haven't made any concrete resolutions as such, but I'm gonna commit to reading more. I admittedly read SO few books, and I've definitely made some allowances for general laziness in 2020! Aside from becoming a beret-wearing bookworm (...could happen?), I'm determined to reconnect with all my wonderful friends, comrades and contemporaries, and hopefully even meet some more! Let's extend a hand to one another, be mindful of the horrors we've individually felt and seen, and empower each other to return to our lives as social beings. All in good time, but that's the plan.


Beth – Roaring Girls’ Board member

-What was your highlight of 2020?

For me 2020 has been a big year of transitions, my daughter turned 21, my Dad turned 70, I turned 40, my Mum and Dad sold our family home and the container of all my childhood memories is now being loved by another family, I lost all of my freelance work in March but have finished the year having achieved more than I originally set out to, but in a completely different way to the one I expected… so my highlight has very much been getting to the heart of what is truly important to me in terms of both my family and my work.

I’m only taking into 2021 the things that really matter!

-What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020?

Hmmm, the things that no longer serve me!

-What're you looking forward to in 2021?

HUGS!!!!!

Sarah – Communications & Engagement Roaring Girl

-What was your highlight of 2020?

My highlight of 2020 was being forced to take some time out for myself. I've slept more than I have in years, worked from home (fortunately) and learned how to grow tomatoes, strawberries, pineberries and peppers. I took time to lay on the settee and watch tv without a guilt trip and spent lots of time with my partner. I worried though, of course I did. I worried about money, my family, my health and my job, but I also managed to find a quietness that I haven't experienced in years... and I really bloody enjoyed it. -What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020? I am happy to leave growing basil in the house in 2020. Aphids ruined two batches and I was absolutely devastated! In all seriousness though, I want to leave the idea of needing to constantly be productive. If I'm not working, I'm cleaning, if I'm not cleaning, I'm DIYing, if I'm not DIYing... I need to understand that it's ok to do nothing sometimes, and that your body needs it! I think it's going to take constant work, but I really want to give it a go. -What're you looking forward to in 2021? Any resolutions? I imagine a lot of people may say this, but the prospect of watching or performing theatre again is something truly, truly exciting. I love standing backstage and listening to people find their seats, chat about their day or ask someone about the kids. The human connectedness, the mundanity, the excitement, the lights, the snacks. I'm there for it all, and I can't wait for it to happen again.


Sam – Roaring Girls’ Board member

-What was your highlight of 2020?

The heart pounding, breath-taking, soul reigniting power of connection. From the joyful anticipation of a catch up call... breathing in the crisp air with a cherished friend... walking hand in hand with my husband and feeling like we had just met... a stolen moment of personal solace hiding in the bathroom... losing hours in the woods building dens, and rebuilding fraught relationships with nature and my children. Every joyful second reconnecting with myself, my loved ones and a slower, simpler, kinder tempo of life. -What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020? Tights! All tights, but mostly a 60-denier black tight. For the last 10 years I have worn tights every day of my life. This was for a combination of reasons, but mostly because I was so insecure about the state of my legs that I would rather pass out (yes this has happened) than take my tights off. 2020 and its amazing ability to allow you (force you) to sit with your feelings coupled with being involved with amazing organisations like The Roaring Girls spurred me onto to remove this constricting baggage from my life (get it -“tights”?!) -What're you looking forward to in 2021? Any resolutions? Everything that the beautiful, unknown has to offer me. I resolve to throw myself into the year with all the enthusiasm of a springer spaniel puppy, drinking in and squeezing out every possible moment of connection I can muster from the next 365 days.

Nat – Designer for The Period Project

-What was your highlight of 2020?

2020 has definitely been a crap year and full of uncertainty but there are definite positives to come out of it. I've had so much more time to spend at home with my partner Dav and our cats, and at times the neighbour's cats! I definitely wouldn't call myself a cat lady but looking over my social media I guess some people may call me that. I also spent most of the first lock down growing plants and veg in the sun. I even painted more. I love painting but sometimes struggle to find time to work on my own art so it was definitely nice to be able to do that.

-What're you looking forward to in 2021? Any resolutions?

I’m looking forward to the world slowly getting back to normality. I'm starting to forget what it's like to be in a rehearsal room or an actual theatre, I definitely miss it!

I don't really have any resolutions but I guess spending more time with family and friends would be amazing (when we're allowed to) and taking the time to sit in the garden with a canvas and paint brush. That would be perfect!

Jenni – Stage Manager for Beach Body Ready tour 2020/21

Jenni says: I am a media director and events producer, with a focus on community building and positively disrupting & building on how we operate locally in the creative industries, especially in aspects of our local music scene.

-What was your highlight of 2020?

My highlight for 2020 is becoming a full-time freelancer again, although I do keep making the joke that with foresight, I may not have chosen this year for it! Despite the fact it's not been a fruitful year for paid work, I've focused on networking and building contacts alongside developing my own ideas, which makes me feel like actually it's been worth struggles. I now understand better what I want my primary focus points to be in the coming years, something I definitely wouldn't have prioritised understanding in a normal year.

-What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020?

I'm happily leaving behind worrying about society's goalposts of earning more and seeing being stressed and busy as a sign of progress and achievement. I am moving into 2021 with pride in putting mine and other's mental health first. Through this openness and having met new people and groups, I've found a lot of validation for the way I work and even my attitude and personality, after years of feeling frustrated and hammered down, so my primary resolution is to not listen to those who tell me I'm 'too much'.

-What're you looking forward to in 2021? Any resolutions?

I'm looking forward to developing my work further and acting more on my ideas as we (fingers crossed) see the world start to heal and open back up again. Life won't be the same and my resolution is to try not to fit back into the mould I was trying to fit to before 2020. Also, I'm excited to go to the pub again.


Shaunagh – The Roaring Girls Producer

-What was your highlight of 2020?

My highlight for 2020 has been the space and time, which I would not have normally given myself. I am a self-confessed workaholic, and I am prone to burning out, so 2020 gave me some time to re-evaluate some things in my life, and has helped me make a better work life balance. I have been able to fill my time with things that make me happy (besides working - which I love aha!). I have learnt new crafts that I have never found the time to do, spent way too much time watching cheesy films on Netflix and have spent most of my days talking to my cat (my favourite thing ever, even though he spends most of his time ignoring me).

-What's one thing you're happy to leave in 2020?

If we could leave the phrase "Socially distanced...of course" in 2020, I think I would really appreciate that.

-What're you looking forward to in 2021? Any resolutions?

I don't tend to make resolutions, as I never keep them and end up disappointing myself. My goal in life is to under-promise and over-deliver, so resolutions aren't for me. I am looking forward to actually touring Beach Body Ready (I may regret saying this in a few months time.), carrying on with all my new crafty habits and learning more skills, finally getting to see my family and in all honesty....I think I am just super excited to hug my mum and sister.

We'd like to thank all of these guys for contributing, as well as everyone else who we've worked with, or who joined us for podcasts and blogposts this year. Finally, we’d like to say a hug thanks to you for reading, following, watching, and supporting The Roaring Girls! We’re really grateful for your support, and have loved chatting with you online! Let us know your highlights of 2020 and what you’re looking forward to next year by finding us @theroaringgirls.


Stay safe, look after each other, and we’ll see you soon. x

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