Mandy Rice Davies
April 9, 2013
Mad World My Masters is a filthy, bawdy and extremely funny play, and with a 'Mrs Littledick' and a gutsy prostitute named 'Truly Kidman' I suppose it would kind of have to be.
Each one of us five women, at one point or another expresses our characters' sensual, sexual side. I play a call girl called 'Mandy' - whom Ian Redford is now nicknaming, 'Mandy Rice-Davies' – who most definitely does.
Growing up I didn't understand boys. They used to punch my arm or throw footballs at me and only now do I realise that was probably because they liked me. I'm now 22 and not much has changed; the boys have discarded footballs and are now using wordplay but I still feel young. I showed a guy a picture of me being sexy once and he asked whether I was being passive aggressive. So, if you've grown up knocking boys over with one-liners, how do you then become a woman and express your desire to touch someone without words?
Jo King is the founder and principal of the London Academy of Burlesque, teaching women to lose their physical inhibitions and connect with their sensuality; we were fortunate enough to have her come into the girls' Mad World rehearsal this week and show us how to surrender ourselves.
First thing Jo said was 'I don't do shyness' as she disrobed and changed into a different dress. She then showed us how to evocatively lick our lips and trace our fingers up one arm, across and down our body. We walked, swinging with our hips, we danced, and I haven't seen these women look more beautiful.
Of course at first I was uncomfortable and apprehensive, trying to talk my way out of it, but I soon found it extremely liberating; to have no inhibitions and it never be distasteful or too much. I have curves, I have a bottom, as do all women and we should be extremely proud of them. Beauty and brains need not work in opposition as combining them can create a super power – if both are used in good faith and equal measure.
Afterwards we went upstairs to join the men's rehearsal and they wanted to know all about it. I didn't say a word!
by Rose Reynolds
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