Linda Nicholls-Gidley’s new show at Flightpath Theatre
tells the story of Veronica and her struggles with
motherhood, pregnancy, mental and physical health.
Her heartfelt portrayal of the challenges of women
not quite coping in difficult situations delves into
depression, grief and a lack of support.

Veronica is experiencing a difficult pregnancy. She is
in constant pain and has trouble walking. She has a
child who is almost two years old that does not make life
any easier. Her mother, Fiona, is interstate and offers her
fairly useless advice over the phone. Her privileged and
self-centred friend Freya offers more new age and trite
advice. Her other friend, Grace, has some empathy
but Veronica seems to let Freya dominate the relationship.
Her unseen husband, Matt, is always at work
and does not appear to appreciate the severity of
Veronica’s struggles.

The health professionals are portrayed as indifferent,
poor listeners and see painkillers as a solution. Her
friend Freya suggests a naturopath as they treat the
whole person. In one of her stronger moments
Veronica details to Freya her problems and that
painkillers are necessary. It is obvious that Veronica
needs more support but neither the health workers,
her friends or her interstate mother are forthcoming
with the required assistance.

LADYBIRD LADYBIRD is a bleak story about the
unspoken challenges faced by women in our society.
It covers difficult topics and is confronting theatre.
Freya’s cliched lifestyle and her tearaway toddler
provide some light relief in the narrative and Grace’s
empathy and her story hint that not all is hopeless
in  Linda Nicholls-Gidley’s drama about the
complexities of the female experience.

The cast is Linda Nicholls-Gidley as Veronica,
Silvana Lorenzo de Shute as Freya, Danielle Stamoulos
as Grace, and Leilani Loau as Fiona and as the nurse.
The director is Anthony Skuse. Lighting Design by Capri
Harris. Sound Design by Charlotte Leamon. Set
Design by Henriette Gabreal and stage management
by Natalie Bahoumian.

LADYBIRD LADYBIRD is at the Flightpath Theatre,
Marrickville until 15th July.