HAMPSTEAD DOWNSTAIRS/CELIA ATKIN PRESENT
By IFEYINWA FREDERICK
Directed by LAKESHA ARIE-ANGELO
Running time: 1 HOUR 35 MINUTES (NO INTERVAL)
£5 - £14 (See ticket information)
Once you’re a woman doing as she pleases with her body, in someone’s eyes you qualify for hoe status
26 Oct - 1 Dec 2018
£5 - £14
Box Office: 020 7722 9301
'Sparkling dialogue and effervescent performances’ | ★★★★ Evening Standard
'Exudes black girl magic' | ★★★★ The Stage
‘Frederick's debut as a playwright is momentous’ | ★★★★ Broadway World
‘A piece that everyone who enjoys theatre should see’ | ★★★★ The Upcoming
'Zings and sparkles’ | ★★★★ The I
Bim, Alex and J have been best friends since school. Loud, funny, inseparable – they are the epitome of girls who just want to have fun.
But now they’re 25, life is starting to get in the way. Careers, relationships, expectations...What better way to escape than a trip to Ibiza for a week of sun, sea and selfies?
But there’s trouble in paradise when reality catches up with them, threatening to derail their holiday as they are forced to accept no amount of partying will let them escape themselves.
Ifeyinwa Frederick’s debut play is a riotous celebration of sisterhood, showing that while life may throw up unexpected turbulence, friendships will last the course.
Suggested age guidance: 16+. Please note this production contains graphic sexual language.
'There’s a new source of light and life at Hampstead and it’s coming from below stairs.'
'The previous play in the downstairs studio, Every Day I Make Greatness Happen, was a hit and so is this lewd, loud and lively three-hander from debut playwright Ifeyinwa Frederick, which shows a group of sexually ebullient young women luxuriating in their physical selves.'
'Longstanding friends Alex (Aretha Ayeh), Bim (Marième Diouf) and J (Nicola Maisie Taylor) are on a blow-out girls’ holiday to Ibiza, all vodka in the coffee mugs for breakfast and much rummaging in suitcases for a new slinky outfit each night.'
'...director Lakesha Arie-Angelo never allows the energy levels to flag, offering a production of joyously bursting physicality and there’s strong work from Diouf as the sharp-talking Bim, who uses sex to feel in control. In a sentence, Diouf can spin Bim from elation to despair.'
'What Frederick and Arie-Angelo need, deserve, now is sustained support to build their careers. Let’s hope London theatre can manage this.'
Fiona Mountford, 12 November, 2018
'Ifeyinwa Frederick’s debut play is set on an all girls’ holiday to Ibiza. Their trip consists of drinking all day, partying every night, and talking about sex. A lot. Which of them is getting it, which of them needs to get more of it and which of them needs to get spicy with it.'
'The 90-minute piece, directed by Lakesha Arie-Angelo, is set in a hotel room, realistically designed by Anna Reid in modern, muted pastel shades with a bed in the middle and an en-suite bathroom in one corner. The costume includes a selection of silk headscarves, for bedtime. For all the talk of sex, it seems apt that it is set on a thrust stage.'
'Frederick’s ferociously funny writing is lit up by the performances of Marieme Diouf, Aretha Ayeh, and Nicola Maisie Taylor. Much of the humour is in their candour. Be it during an in-depth discussion about how much caucasian penis looks like raw chicken or when Diouf’s Bim announces that she masturbates as religiously as a buddhist monk meditates.'
'That they are all black women is part of what makes the play remarkable: it captures the essence of millennial sisterhood, free from tired trauma narratives.'
''Verdict: Ifeyinwa Frederick’s ferociously funny debut play exudes black girl magic.'
JN Benjamin , 9 November, 2018
'The Hoes is a joyous celebration of millennial womanhood and friendship that's unafraid to show the darker side of growing up.'
'Frederick's script owns a defined, defiant bluntness that holds its own in a spectrum that goes from sex (a lot of it) to addressing suicide. She gives the audience an intimate ride into the minds of three young women who are trying to find themselves. One of them struggles with her inner demons, another one with what her family thinks of her, the remaining one with her drive.'
'They tackle intimacy and what comes with it with freshness and candour, covering relationships, flings and one-night stands like any sex-positive friends in real life would. This verisimilitude that lingers throughout the play is what gives it a beating heart. The characters are far from stereotypes, and there's not a hint of the mythical "millennial snowflake" in sight.'
'These are intelligent women who have to get on with their lives and who want to have the best time in Ibiza with each other. Ayeh, Diouf and Taylor share a sparking chemistry; they bounce off each other's remarks and give multi-faceted and complete performances. Arie-Angelo directs their frankness and outspokenness delicately, focusing the scene largely on a bed.'
'Anna Reid's set design is as bright as the women it holds: pastels and neons are set against the hues of a sunset, accurately giving the piece the holiday vibe it needs to convey. What makes the show a milestone, besides the exceptional writing, is the invigorating composition of the cast and creative team.'
'The Hoes is a universal piece of theatre that touches highly important matter in the lives of young women. Frederick's debut as a playwright is momentous and couldn't come at a better time.'
Cindy Marcolina, 10 November, 2018
'Ifeyinwa Frederick’s debut play takes us to Ibiza, where three 25-year-old women are in search of sun, sand and sex. However, before their escapism can be fully realised real life catches up with them, and the friends talk candidly about their aspirations and insecurities. At the show’s preview performance, the intimate setting of the downstairs studio at Hampstead Theatre combined with Anna Reid’s minimal set and Jai Morjaria’s soft lighting allows the audience to feel like a fly on the wall. A contemporary soundtrack designed by Duramaney Kamara propels us into the Spanish island and contributes to the fast pace of the production, which runs for approximately 95 minutes without an interval.'
'It is the acting, however, that draws us in and grasps our attention. Aretha Ayeh as Alex and Nicola Maisie Taylor as J are exceptional in their powerfully understated and naturalistic performances, but Marième Diouf as Bim stands out and elevates the piece with some particularly emotive and sensitive scenes as her character struggles with anxiety and depression.'
'The dialogue is razor sharp and punchy, often generating laugh-out-loud moments but remaining authentic and true to character throughout, and the bond these women share is incredibly believable and a real joy to watch.'
'...in many ways, it’s a piece that everyone who enjoys theatre should see. It is deeply rooted in the now and the genuinely real and raw responses of the characters to situations and events are representative of 20 and 30-somethings trying to navigate through life in 2018. This is a production that has something to say. It both entertains and enlightens. The carefully constructed dialogue, poignant performances and character-driven comedy leave us feeling as warm as we would be in the Ibiza sun, but this getaway is selling fast, so don’t miss the party.'
Jonathan Marshall, 12 November, 2018
'This lewd, loud and lively three-hander from debut playwright Ifeyinwa Frederick, shows a group of sexually ebullient young women luxuriating in their physical selves.'
'The delightful dialogue zings and sparkles: "I like spreading joy" "You mean, your legs".
'Yet beneath the effervescent surface of these 25-year-old girls who just wanna have fun lurk buried issues, not least that bottle of tablets Bim is stashing away and refusing to take. Will a happily-ever-after await them at the end of all this partying? And is that what they even want?'
Fiona Mountford, 15 November, 2018
NICOLA MAISIE TAYLOR
We caught up with The Hoes' Director Lakesha Arie-Angelo to talk favourite rehearsal moments, crucial life advice and sisterhood...
Fiona Mountford awards Ifeyinwa Frederick's The Hoes four stars.
JN Benjamin awards Ifeyinwa Frederick's The Hoes four stars.
Aretha Ayeh,Marième Diouf and Nicola Maisie Taylor will star.
Featuring a Tony Award-winning Broadway hit and Maisie Williams' stage debut
First five performances: All tickets £5
The next twelve performances: £12
Performances thereafter: £14
Seniors: £10 (matinee only)
Under 30s and Students: £10
Groups: For every 9 tickets get the 10th free