Realtine/Noreen: written and performed by Janet Behan
Directed: Jessica Higgs
Stepaside productions in association with Shoreham Wordfest,
part of Camden Fringe 2016 at the Tristan Bates Theatre.
Realtine/Noreen tells the stories of two very different women, both scarred from
a young age by incarceration in different Catholic institution. Their stories
illustrate the emotionally crippling effect on women of finding themselves at the
mercy of the Catholic Church.
In Realtine, our heroine joins a creative writing class but something has prevented
her from writing a single word. Today the dam has burst and her story pours out.
The story of a thirteen year old forced to enter the Poor Clare – a closed order of nuns.
Noreen, an immigrant, rails against daughter, husband and neighbours for ruining
her life; beneath the rage she nurses a broken heart, pining for the baby that was
stolen from her many years ago.
Janet Behan: ‘My father, author Brian Behan, was one of many thousands who
suffered incarceration and abuse at the hands of the Catholic Church. The
victims of such abuse are now known to be so numerous that it is possible for us
to lose sight of them as individuals. It’s my hope that these two plays will go
some way to helping us see the human cost behind the numbers.’