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Last Gasp: A Recalibration

Split Britches

Two women stand next to each other. One is wearing a suit blowing air into their mouth with their lips pursed. She is wearing a black suit and tie. The other lady is wearing a black top and has her mouth wide open and her short bob brown hair is blowing in a gust of wind.

Equipped with some know-how and a touch of irony, Peggy Shaw and Lois Weaver use spoken word and movement to respond to a world turned upside down. How do you survive a loss? First you recalibrate…

Returning to the stage after almost two years, two icons of lesbian-feminist theatre gather us in the same room, but not as the same people. Speaking directly, they question the demise of ageing bodies, civil conversation, and a sustainable planet. Shaw’s poetic musings are interspersed with Weaver’s micro dance essays in which she wryly upends ‘how to’ mania.

Last Gasp: A Recalibration brings prickly conversations literally to the table in episodes entitled ‘The Trump in Me’, ‘How to Survive a Loss’ and ‘How to Set a Table in an Emergency’. With cultural references ranging from surrealist painter Dorothea Tanning to singer Johnnie Ray, the legendary performance duo ease a little tension while hitting upon strategies for moving on in the aftermath of a foundation shattering crisis.

1 hour 10 mins, no interval
Age guidance 16+ (strong language and adult themes. More Information)

All performances are Relaxed
This performance is still in development, but pre-show information will be available prior to its showing, please check back soon or get in touch with us to discuss further 

Post-show talk, Thu 21 Oct
Free to same-day ticket holders. Hosted by Barak adé Soleil.

Fri 22 Oct, 7.45pm
Captioned performance

Presented by the Barbican. Funded by the Guggenheim Foundation, Guthrie Theater, New York State Council on the Arts, Wellcome Trust, Metal Culture and Arts Council England.

Image: Christa Holka 


‘Thought-provoking debate on ageing and unexplored potential‘
Stage on Unexploded Ordanances

Digital Programme

How is this performance Relaxed?

A Relaxed performance is ideal for those who would benefit from a more informal approach to noise and movement in the auditorium, or would feel more at ease knowing they could enter and exit freely. 

For this production:

  • The house will be opened early to allow you more time to find your seats.
  • A member of the Front of House team will lead a pre-show welcome talk.
  • The Front of House team are briefed on providing an more informal service and relaxing the standards in regard to audience behaviour during the performance.
  • Latecomer and re-admittance points will be relaxed to allow people to leave and re-enter the auditorium more freely. 
  • The house lights will remain slightly raised to during the performance to ensure your safety if you need to move about.
  • Auditorium doors will be kept open during the performance to assist you in entering and exiting the theatre during the performance.
  • Some seats are kept off-sale so you can move around during the performance more freely (within reason and managed by the Front of House team).
  • The performers are briefed about Relaxed performances, and know that you may need to move around and make noise.
  • A quiet chill out space is provided with comfortable seating.

This performance has not been sensory adapted. Please get in touch with us if you would like to discuss further before making a booking.  Contact the Theatre team at [email protected].

With thanks

Wellcome logo

The Pit