“The Stage is a wrestling ring and the story in it is full of blood, sweat and laffs. In 8 rounds we see Trafford Tanzi growing from Battered Baby to Queen of the wrestling ring, and finally grunting and grappling her heart out to stay wrestling, stay working and stay sane in the fight of her life- against her husband. Never mind the Marriage Guidace Council, this one will be decided by 2 falls, 2 submissions or a knock out.”
Bernadette Garrett ran the box office at the Half Moon Theatre on Alie Street and Mile End Road over a six-year period. Bernadette talks about the systems they used; productions she saw including Pal Joey and Trafford Tanzi; the involvement of young people and the move from Alie Street to Mile End Road.
“An astonishing evening of rabble-rousing theatricality.”
The Daily Telegraph
“…Had me in stitches.”
“Short and sharp as a first-round knockout.”
As a kid, I remember that before the new bit of the building was built and the theatre was happening in the old chapel, we used to muck around in the bit of scrap ground next to it. If we were lucky, we could climb up the fire escape and the crew working on the lighting would let us come in and sit on the scaffolding, to look down and watch the theatre.
Trafford Tanzi, as I remember it, and I was only young, was a really physical theatre performance. As I was so high up in the scaffolding, where I shouldn’t have been, it had a really dramatic appearance. You look down on the boxing ring, which was really brightly lit, and everything else was thrown into darkness.
I remember Toya being dressed in what felt like a Wonder Woman outfit to me, and she was constantly being tossed from one side of the boxing ring to the other. I never really quite knew what was going on but it was very exciting, very physical and very shouty. Toya just seemed like absolutely the right person to play that part.