This powerful and moving story, set in 1846 in the ante-bellum South, follows two young women on their journey to acceptance. With elements of blues, folk, hymns and gospel, Dessa Rose
perfectly blends history and fiction. The storytelling for which Ahrens and Flaherty are most famous is masterfully exhibited throughout. Passionate and innocent Dessa Rose is a young slave faced with a barrage of hardships because of the colour of her skin. While Ruth, a young white mother, faces difficulties because of her gender. Ruth and Dessa 'hand down the story' to their grandchildren, reliving the adventure they experienced together. Through their extraordinary tale we see their deep and lasting bond and how this makes them part of a 'long, strong line of women'. Running time: 2hrs including interval.Performers Cynthia Erivo (Dessa Rose), Cassidy Janson (Ruth), John Addison, Edward Baruwa, Sharon Benson, Alexander Evans, Cameron Leigh.
Lyrics Lynn Ahrens. Music Stephen Flaherty (based on the book by Sherley Anne Williams). Producer Arion Productions. Director Andrew Keates. Director Jennifer Bakst (assistant). Costume Philippa Batt. Director Benjamin Newsome (casting). Lighting Neill Brinkworth. Choreographer Sam Spencer Lane. Musical Director Dean Austin.