Publicity photo

18 - 20 May 2017

Top Girls

by Caryl Churchill

Directed by Sarah McMahon

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Caryl Churchill wrote 'Top Girls' in 1981, at the height of Maggie Thatcher's reign. Her lead, Marlene, is a true product of the 80's, almost trying to outdo the men around her. She is single-minded and driven, to the exclusion of family members.

The second act flips between Marlene's sister Joyce's back yard inn the fens and the 'Top Girls' agency. Angie, her 16 year-old niece, who is slightly slow and her best friend Kit who is 12, are trying Joyce's patience. We then see how Marlene operates at work and the contrast between Joyce's life and hers.

Act 3 is set in Joyce's kitchen one year earlier, on a rare visit from Marlene. She has not seen either Joyce or Angie for 6 years! tension mounts as we explore the fractured relationship between the sisters and learn more about Angie and her difficulties.

Sarah McMahon




Isabelle Bird & Louise

Pope Joan & Win

Lady Nijo & Nell

Dull Gret & Mrs Kidd

Patient Griselda

Angie & Waitress



Shona & Jeanine


Set Design

Stage Manager

Lighting & Sound



Set Construction







Food Props

Bar Co-ordinator

Front of House

Advance Sales




Sarah Godsell

Lin Bowden

Sue Anstey

Debby Ashton

Pat Stimson

Rachel Taylor

Dee Mason

Di Pardoe

Hannah Evans

Natasha Finch


Sarah McMahon

Mark Whitehouse

Rob Pardoe

Pat Stimson

Angie Croome

Mark Whitehouse

  Steve Anstey

Mark Whitehouse

  Steve Anstey

  Sarah McMahon

Godfey Laundy

  Alison Horner

Helen Briggs

Andy Fisher

Ann Aplin

Bob Allen

Ray Bulmer


Act One performed as a One-Act Play

Won the first round in the AAD Festival

All-England Theatre Festival

9th April 
Princess Theatre, BURNHAM-ON SEA Somerset,
Actonians Drama Group were given the Adjudicator's Award for the set and costumes for "Top Girls" Act 1 by Caryl Churchill.


At the Rose Bowl evening held at the Grand Hotel, Bristol, Pat Stimson was awarded the 'Quartet Community Foundation Award for Best Supporting Actress Drama' for her as Dull Gret in this production.

"An outstanding characterisation and worthy of any theatre company. Her appearance was totally convincing in an amazing medieval costume as in the Bruegel painting. The use of her pockets to secrete wooden spoons, extra food, bottles of wine and so on was skilfully mimed, together with the use of her eyes to register her emotions. This brought out the comedy superbly and was nothing short of brilliant."

Dress rehearsal - Act 1...







Act 2, Sc 1.....


Act 2 Sc 2.....




Act 3.....




Set design...