The first autobiography in the English language was written by a possibly illiterate mother of fourteen children, Margery Kempe. Dame Julian, the renowned anchoress of Norwich, penned writings on mysticism and mercy that have dazzled readers of spiritual literature for centuries. Marge and Jules resurrects the historic moment where – as writings record – Margery met Julian. As spiritual enlightenment meets the darker stories of life in the Middle Ages, these women confess all, talking faith, life, after-life, semantics, erotics and the mysteries of the man they love.
The performance of Marge and Jules will be followed by a panel discussion with the play’s writers, Sarah Anson and Máirín O’Hagan, together with Sarah Salih, ho has published widely on female mysticism in the late Middle Ages, and Sarah Law, a scholar and a poet who has written on both Margery and Julian. These panellists will respond to the play in the light of today’s knowledge of the medieval mystics.
Máirín O’Hagan has written various comic plays including The Orphanarium of Erthing Worthing, The Snow Queen and Leopardess, the latter with Sarah.
Bereavement: The Musical was nominated for ‘Best New Musical’ and ‘Best Lyrics’ in the Musical Theatre Matters awards. Her adaptation of Aristophanes’ The Assembly Women is currently touring the UK. Her film company, ‘barefaced greek’, makes short ﬁlms using Greek drama in the original language.
Sarah Anson has written Leopardess Comedy, The Keepers, and Marge & Jules. Her acting credits include the Dromios in The Comedy of Errors (Pendley Shakespeare Festival), Louise in White Meat (Courtyard Theatre), Polly Brown in The Boy Friend (Assembly George Square) and MJ in Chokepoint. Alongside Máirín, she is a founding member of theatre company ‘Queynte Laydies’.
Sarah Salih is Senior Lecturer in English at King’s College London. She co-edited a volume of essays on Julian of Norwich’s Legacy: Medieval Mysticism and Post-Medieval Reception, with Denise N Baker (2009).
Sarah Law is Senior Lecturer in creative writing and English literature at London Metropolitan University. Her book, Ink’s Wish (2014), is a collection of poems inspired by Margery Kempe.