On Centre Stage: The Shoe-Horn Sonata: I Love Women.

On Centre Stage.
By Douglas Kennedy

The Shoe-Horn Sonata: I Love Women.
Women, Women, Women. I love women. I loved my mother, I love my wife and I love my daughter. Women give us humanity. They give us nurture. They give what it is to be human. So why do we treat them so badly? I am not just writing about the obvious – the Middle Eastern prejudice. I am talking about Australia. I am talking about your mother, your daughter and your grandmother. I am talking about the women portrayed in John Misto’s The Shoe-Shorn Sonata. The women who went to war – that’s the Second World War. The women whose diaries were taken from them, under the presentence of cleaning them up, and quietly destroyed. Women who gave so much in both wars and were, for their trouble, silently forgotten. Now director Jim Dickson is revisiting this slice of history through Misto’s Shoe-Horn Sonata at the Gold Coast Little Theatre until June 4. The front of the program says Lest We Forget. Sadly too often – more years ago than now – we have chosen to forget our women. Marie Dickson and Eva Wheeler play two women caught in the horrors of the Japanese invasion and now reflecting on their past. My old mate Barry Gibson generously takes a back seat as a voice over of a commentator. The women’s conversation steals the show as we learn of their sacrifice, what they did for each other. This is an incredibly important story. Misto said (having ready the nurses diary) I would have loved to have built a monument, but I couldn’t. So I wrote a play. I would really love for every mature school male and female to see this play. Everyone loves pure entertainment, no one love it more than me, but something comes along that’s more important. I don’t want to sound patronising – the women in my life have been and are extremely strong and independent – but I love them and I want to protect them. Never forget how much our women, your women, sacrificed, during all our wars (or those women who gave at home). They shall not grow old…….

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