How it all began…
Miss Rep began in 2011 when Jo Bates and Bex Fidler recognized that many girls were dropping out of arts projects they were doing. They decided a safe space was needed for girls to be able to come together and express themselves. Miss Represented was born! Jo and Bex developed the project with artist Gemma Kauffman. Musician Al Start and artist Tamsin Atkinson also came onboard. And, of course, it was mainly shaped by the girls themselves; Evie, Jess, Amba, Ellie, Shannon & Bethan.
Over 12 weeks we explored women’s rights, stereotypes and identity. We dressed up, we made songs, we were inspired by Gillian Wearing’s work, “Signs that say what you want them to say and not Signs that say what someone else wants you to say”.
We began to develop ideas around the different ways we express ourselves – what we show to strangers compared to our closest friends. A deeper delve into looking at identity; our internal and external worlds, both personally and as females.
What emerged was a miss rep takeover of the Brighton Dome Chorus Rooms… down a secret staircase into the belly of the venue and into a room audiences are not usually allowed access to. We shared big photographs hanging from the ceiling two for each member of the group, each telling a different story. A huge wicker cage hung from the ceiling with collaged girls and birds marching out and breaking free. Audiences also experienced two original songs performed live, one accompanied by a dance piece, and a glow-up, collaged protest dress.
There was no stopping us now….