She was last seen on The Maltings stage as Elizabeth I and with her latest show Rebecca Vaughan is once again showing she’s not afraid of an iconic female role.
Rebecca won rave reviews for her performance of the fiery Tudor monarch back in October and now she’s well and truly thrown the gauntlet down for herself by taking on the personas of 13 different Jane Austen characters.
The aptly titled ‘Austen’s Women’ is once again a solo show which will see Rebecca open the pages of the likes of ‘Emma’, ‘Mansfield Park’ and ‘Pride and Prejudice’ to delve into the inner sanctum of some of their most famous females.
But rather than being daunted by the prospect of taking on more than a dozen parts, Rebecca said it was a challenge she was thoroughly enjoying.
“It’s a really fun show to do and I never get bored,” she commented.
“I’m still finding new things out about the characters myself and I’m particularly enjoying getting to grips with the lesser known ones.
“Lizzie Bennett is of course in there but alongside fantastic characters like Diana Parker, from ‘Sanditon’, the novel Jane Austen was writing when she died.
“Playing the different roles is like changing gears.
“To begin with I did find it terrifying that people would be coming along to the show with preconceived ideas of how the characters should be but now I always come off stage on a high.”
Rebecca said she hoped her show would go some way to challenging the popular notion that Austen’s novels are all hearts and flowers.
“It’s only in the past 20 years that Austen’s work has been pigeon holed as ‘chick lit’,” she continued.
“It was certainly never regarded as that by her contemporaries. She was very much regarded as a social commentator.
“I think we’ve lost her ideas amongst the romance and frocks of some adaptations.
“Her novels have a common theme; that women feel trapped and rather than marry anyone are on a quest to find someone they both love and respect.
“I love how flawed Austen’s characters are; they are by no means flawless heroines.”
*Rebecca will bring ‘Austen’s Women’ to The Maltings stage on Friday, June 7 at 7.30pm.
Tickets are priced £14/£12 concessions stalls; £16 circle and £18 box seat.