Berkoff's Women

Opened 5 February 2001, Closed 10 February 2001 at the Ambassadors Theatre
Returned 28 January 2002, Closed 23 February 2002 at the Arts Theatre

Linda Marlowe stars in the one-woman show Berkoff's Women in London, based on the works of Steven Berkoff

Out of her unique association with Steven Berkoff, Linda Marlowe presents, Berkoff's Women, a theatrical exploration of sensuality, revenge, pathos, heart-breaking loneliness and riotous humour. Having worked with Berkoff for over twenty years, this is a compilation of some of the most rewarding and exciting moments of Berkoff's female roles, featuring excerpts from his plays Decadence, Greek, East, Agamemnon, Sturm Und Drang, plus a newly dramatised story From My Point of View.

The show is very simple performed, no set, just an elegant black dress and a chair. Through a series of monologues Linda Marlowe uses the prose of Steven Berkoff to explore the many emotions of women. Performed as a 'stand up' Linda Marlowe physically illustrates the wonderful humour and the sheer sadness of the many personas on show. Steven Berkoff's language is strong and poetic and his characters outrageous.

"Though she hasn't Berkoff's ability to grab us by force and put emotional half-nelsons on us - and who has? - [Linda Marlowe is] a splendidly versatile, confident performer. Whether she's giving us extracts from Decadence, Kvetch or East, or a complete monologue called From My Point of View, you can see why her collaboration with the author-actor goes back 20-odd years... You don't feel, as you might, that Berkoff is indulging in male self-flagellation or offering up mantras of mea culpa. His writing is about as un-wet as writing gets. Nor do you feel, as you also might, that he is patronising women as poor, pitiable victims. Nevertheless, there are scenes when he and Marlowe show us female pain as well as female envy and anger: a wife despairingly appeasing a bullying husband by cooking and more cooking and, best of all, the failed good-time-girl in My Point of View. She's the female counterpart of the male 'loner' who puts up last year's cards at Christmas, a middle-aged woman who ends up being banned from the Mecca as a prostitute because of her habit of leaving with the plain or psychotic men nobody else wants. Marlowe makes you not only feel her humiliation but smell the odour of desperation she can't help giving off: a soft, sad ending to a tough, funny evening." The Times

"Linda Marlowe is one of the great unsung actresses of the British stage, and I'm here I tell you, to sing her a song. This lady is a vamp in a black dress slit along her left thigh. She bites. She stings. And she warbles. In sketches and set-pieces by her friend and colleague, Steven Berkoff - the rash rottweiler of the East End sex war - she makes her mark as a West End star... This show has evolved from a try-out at the Edinburgh Festival two years ago. It has grown in confidence, and allure, and will be the talk of the town all week... It drips with talent, lyricism, vulgarity, tenderness and charm. And it tells wonderful stories of sexual aggression and dependency, of tragedy and loneliness." The Daily Mail

Berkoff's Women Linda Marlowe in London at the Ambassadors Theatre opened on 5 February 2001 and closed on 10 February 2001, returned to London at the Arts Theatre from 28 January 2002, closed on 23 February 2002