Film celebrates inspiring women in Dacorum

How To Live cast and composer

We have been working in partnership with Pursued by a Bear Theatre Company on a creative writing and film project, celebrating inspiring women in Hertfordshire. The project was part of Hertfordshire Year of Culture 2020 (HYOC2020).

The film and theatre project was for older adults (aged 60 and over) to celebrate women, past and present, as part of a series of short films called Nothing on Earth. The participants wrote stories about their own lives and the women that have inspired or influenced them. These stories were used to create a theatre piece for film called How To Live, based on these Dacorum stories.

Workshops were initially held for tenants in two Supported Housing Schemes in Tring and Hemel Hempstead and, during the pandemic, the project was adapted for people to write and send in their memories and stories.

Councillor Julie Banks, Member Champion for Hertfordshire Year of Culture, said, “This project has been a valuable opportunity to engage our older residents creatively during the pandemic, as well as celebrating their lives and stories. The film movingly tells the wonderful stories of our residents’ living past and the women who influenced them, which we hope will inspire others.”

Rosamunde Hutt, Artistic Director of Pursued by a Bear, said: “It has been an honour to hear so many vivid stories shared with generosity, wit and warmth by people with such full lives and memories. I am glad that, despite the situation we have found ourselves in, we are able to pay tribute to these contributors by presenting How to Live in this way.”

How to Live is performed by a cast that brings together actors from the previous films in the Nothing on Earth series of short films. It was filmed over Zoom during the second lockdown in November in accordance with COVID-19 restrictions.

How to Live is available to watch on Active Dacorum’s YouTube channel. Find out more on our Hertfordshire Year of Culture page.