Singers in boxing gloves and tutus and kerchiefs pause from a fight


interdisciplinary work fusing boxing, dance & opera [60’] 2010.

Commissioner: World Stage, Harbourfront Centre
Funders: Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council, Roger D. Moore & Harbourfront Centre Fresh Ground new works.
Credits: music Juliet Palmer, text Anna Chatterton, choreography Julia Aplin.
Premiere: Urbanvessel with Vilma Vitols, Neema Bickersteth, Savoy Howe, Christine Duncan, Anna Chatterton, Julia Aplin & Juliet Palmer, World Stage, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, November 10-14, 2010.
Program note:

During the research and development of Voice-Box we learned that Canadian women were not allowed to box until 1991. Lawyer and aspiring boxer Jenny Reid not only won that right for women, but fought the first sanctioned match against Thérèse Robitaille in Nova Scotia. It wasn’t until last year that women were granted permission to box in the upcoming 2012 Olympics. This is a huge breakthrough as the last time women boxed at the Olympics was in 1904 at a demonstration match. Savoy Howe generously supplied us with stories about being a female boxer in a world of men, the discrimination and eventual support she and other female boxers experienced.

Voice-Box celebrates and encourages women who choose to scrap it out, to display strength, sweat and skill, punching like a girl, fighting ugly but fighting fair, in the ring and in the world.

— Julia Aplin, Anna Chatterton and Juliet Palmer.