Female Species re-discovered at Cronulla

Arts Theatre Cronulla's third production for the year is The Female of the Species, a wicked adult comedy that deftly walks the tightrope between satire and farce.

The play explores how the ideology of writers of the 1970's Women's Liberation Movement era may have affected some readers.

The inspiration for the play was a true-life incident involving Germaine Greer being held at gunpoint by a young student in 2000.

Written Joanna Murray-Smith poses the dilemma of what would happen if someone lived their life according to the principles in the books of a renowned feminist.

In Murray-Smith's play, feminist writer Margot Mason is at her country home, suffering from writer's block and stressed about an impending deadline for her next book.

Former student Molly Rivers arrives unexpectedly, brandishing a gun, and threatens to shoot Mason for warping her mother's mind with her influential hit book The Cerebral Vagina.

Margot's daughter Tess then arrives, exhausted from her house full of children, along with Tess's sensitive stockbroker husband Bryan, and the virtues or otherwise of Margot's best-sellers are debated.

Add in the opinionated thoughts of macho taxi driver Frank, and Margot's flamboyantly gay publisher Theo, and a melting pot of diverse opinions is presented for the audience to consider.

The play premiered in Melbourne in 2006, had its London West End premiere in 2008, and was performed on Broadway in 2013.

The ATC production stars Lynda Leavers (Margot), Meili Bookluck (Molly), Emily Perry (Tess), Haki Pepo Olu Crisden (Bryan), Kevin Brest (Frank) and Graham Yates (Theo).

The Female of the Species, directed by Susan Turner, opens on Friday, August 2, and runs till Saturday, September 7.

"Strap yourselves in and enjoy this thought-provoking and hilarious look at how the ideology of others can gravely affect ourselves and those around us," Turner said.

Performances are on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays with three Sunday afternoon matinees.