Telling the little-known true story of the Sterling Ladies, this world premiere from one of the most widely performed playwrights in the UK celebrates the Lionesses and the pioneering women who paved the way as they played their hearts out a century before. Known as the Dagenham Invincibles and the greatest women’s football team of World War One, the Sterling Ladies never lose a game over two seasons and are declared ‘The Unbeaten Women Champions of the Country’. In the wake of the end of the war in 1919, the factory girls must hang up their boots and triumphs fade into obscurity. In 2023, their war-cry is heard in the roar of the Lionesses and for Hornchurch teenager Maya, this is the event of the summer. Cheering on England from the family sofa, she conjures up long-lost footballing secrets and evokes the spirit of The Invincibles. Written as the FIFA Women’s World Cup plays out this summer, like the best football games, the results are unknown until the final whistle. Told across two football teams, a century apart, The Invincibles commemorates the joyous spirit of the girls who played for the love of the game.
Writer Amanda Whittington said, “I’m delighted to be back at Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch for this unique production. The Invincibles celebrates a century of change and with women’s football on the world stage, it’s beyond exciting to bring the untold history of local pioneers Sterling Ladies to life. It’s also thrilling – and a little scary – to write the 2023 scenes as the World Cup plays out. Win or lose though, I’ve no doubt the Lionesses will give us plenty of drama!”
Amanda Whittington is a playwright whose work is widely performed by companies across the UK and beyond. Her titles include Ladies Day, Be My Baby, Atalanta Forever, Mighty Atoms, Kiss Me Quickstep and The Thrill of Love. Recent work includes the book for Fisherman’s Friends: The Musical, which toured the UK in 2022 – 2023. Amanda has numerous writing credits for BBC Radio Four. D for Dexter won ‘Best Series/Serial’ in the BBC Audio Drama Awards (2016) and ran for eight years.
Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch is a vibrant producing theatre, working in Outer East London, Essex and beyond. As a cultural hub, over 210,000 people enjoy the programme each year. Audiences are guaranteed a warm welcome from a three-year winner of UK Theatre’s Most Welcoming Theatre (2016 – 2018) and London Theatre of the Year 2020 (The Stage Awards), the first Outer London theatre to receive this prestigious award.
Running Time: 130 mins (inc interval) | Suitable for ages 8+ (PG)
Written by Amanda Whittington (she/her)
Directed by James Grieve (he/him)
Design by Laura Ann Price (she/they)
Lighting design by Martha Godfrey (they/them)
Sound design and composition by Holly Khan (she/her)
Movement direction by Lucie Pankhurst (she/her)
Casting by Jenkins McShane (she/her)
Historical consultant Steve Bolton (he/him)
Assistant director Rebecca Goh (they/them)
Musical director Andrew Linham (he/him)
Voice coach Mary Howland (she/her)
Football coach Lily Jones (she/her)
Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch Creative Lead Kate Lovell (she/her)
Gemma Barnett (she/her), Georgia Bruce (they/them), Simon Darwen (he/him), Yanexi Enriquez (she/her), Emma Feeney (she/her), Rebecca Hayes (they/them), Nikita Johal (she/her), Eleanor Kane (she/they), Steve Simmonds (he/him).
7th – 23rd September
Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, Billet Ln, Hornchurch RM11 1QT
All performances from 13th September will be audio described.
Relaxed Performance on 16th September at 2.30pm
£12.50 – £29.00
www.queens-theatre.co.uk | 01708 443333
26th – 30th September
New Wolsey Theatre, Civic Dr, Ipswich IP1 2AS
All performances are audio described.
Captioned Performance: 29th September at 7.30pm
£12.00 – £27.00
www.wolseytheatre.co.uk | 01473 295900