1st Aug 2018 - 27th Aug 2018

Bunker Two - Pleasance Courtyard


Suitable for ages 12 and above


Important information:

This show contains strong language.

New York, 1962. Beat poet Elise Cowen commits suicide and her family incinerates all but eighty-three of her poems.

Elise uncovers the story of this extraordinary poet, intertwining her surviving work with dramatised interviews, revealing the thrilling and hedonistic culture of the Beatniks and the oppressive pressures that cut her life short.

Dixie Fried Theatre's moving piece of new writing brings to light the life and legacy of a woman shrouded in Allen Ginsberg's shadow.

'[Callis] is a young writer to watch, so watch and listen' (Anna-Maria Murphy 'Tristan & Yseult’ Kneehigh).

Dixie Fried Theatre in association with Bristol Spotlights

Written by Brenda Callis

Directed by Eden Peppercorn and Oli Grant

Produced by Asha Osborne-Grinter

CAST: Leo Skir - Guy Woods, Joyce Johnson - Mimi Paltridge, Donald Cook - Harry Petty, Father/Ginsberg - Angus Cooper, Carol - Jess Garlick


Open/closeReviews and Quotations

A beautiful ride... Dixie Fried Theatre pull the story in all directions
5 stars
Marbles Magazine
The New York accents are seamless and the acting is fervent, intense and convincing - despite having a cast of only four, the play manages to simultaneously convey the anger and rawness of grief felt for the deceased Elise while also incorporating an element of humor.
5 stars
Elise reminds us of the inherent bias against women in literature.
4 stars
Breaking the Fourth Wall
Elise tells stories that have never been told before, from entirely new female perspectives, and therefore it has the makings of something incredibly radical and subversive.
4 stars
Intermission Bristol
‘Elise’ took an incredibly interesting and overlooked part of American literary history and successfully offered it to the public consciousness... [A] continually captivating portrayal of the Beat sensibility.

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