My Mother Said I Never Should

by Charlotte Keatley

Showing 23 May – 30 October

The Writer

Charlotte Keatley

Charlotte Keatley


My Mother Said I Never Should is the most widely performed play ever written by a woman, having now been translated or produced in 31 countries from Japan to Peru. Premiered at Contact Theatre, Manchester, in 1987 and produced at the Royal Court in London in 1989, in 2000 the National Theatre named it as one of the significant plays of the twentieth century. It is studied at GCSE, A Level, universities and drama schools.

Other theatre plays include: The Iron Serpent (Leeds Theatre Workshop); An Armenian Childhood (Impact Theatre, Leeds, also acted in it); Dressing For Dinner (tour of Midland and Northern arts circuit, also acted in it); The Legend of Padgate (community play for 80 adults and children, also designed and directed); Waiting For Martin (English Shakespeare Company); Fears And Miseries In The Third Term (Young Vic); The Ringing Singing Tree (Contact Theatre); The Sleep Of Reason Produces Monsters
(Leeds Theatre Workshop and Shanghai Academy Theatre, also directed); Our Father (Watford Palace Theatre, published by Methuen); I Am Janet (The Gap, Manchester).

In development: an epic play about surviving civil war, set in Georgia and Abkhazia commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company and Emilie’s Reason about the passionate life of 18th century scientist Emilie du Chatelet.

Charlotte has also written and directed performance art, community theatre and plays for schools.

Awards include George Devine Award, Manchester Evening News Best New Play, Time Out Theatre Award, Sunday Times Outstanding Performance Award, Prix Danube and Edinburgh Fringe First. She was also nominated for an Olivier Award - Most Promising Newcomer, and for a Molière Award. She received an EMMY as a co-researcher filming in children’s prisons in Georgia, for C4 documentary Kids Behind Bars.

Charlotte has written numerous dramas for BBC Radio 4, a children’s drama Badger for Granada TV and film. As a journalist she has written for the Observer, Financial Times, Yorkshire Post, Scotsman, Spare Rib, Performance Magazine, the Guardian, and arts reviews for BBC Front Row.

She has taught creative writing from Burnley to Shanghai and continues to run workshops in schools, universities and for community groups of all ages on request.

She lives in Manchester, has a daughter Georgia and goes rock climbing instead of cleaning the house.