She Stole My Every Rock and Roll

She Stole My Every Rock and Roll is a forty minute roll the in hey, did you say love? A tough tale of two women in, out and in between love, the show takes poetry like a fine glass of wine and throws down a quick shot of lust, followed by a hangover you won’t want to miss. The show blends popular romance, slam poetry and the occasional dirty limerick to create a poetic narrative about love in a modern age.

Launched in 2011 at the Queensland Poetry Festival as “A Mills & Boon Swoon”in 2011, the show has since been performed at several poetry events in Brisbane; in Melbourne as a part of the Overload Poetry Festival; in Canberra as a part of the Global Poetics Tour; and at the wonderful Woodford Festival. Redeveloped to stage as a poetic play, the show featured at the Anywhere Festival in Brisbane in May 2012, then at the Brisbane Writers Festival in 2013 and in New York as a part of the Different but Same tour.

Overload Poetry Festival reviewer, Bronwyn Lovell, had this to say about the show in her review on Slam Up:

“A Mills and Boon Swoon takes audience members through the full cycle of meeting, falling in love, making vows, trying for a baby, betrayal, and the aftermath of a break up – all in less than forty-minutes. Despite the incredible amount of ground covered, the show was brilliantly paced and spends due time exploring each emotion without ever feeling rushed. It’s years of memories entwined in a delicate string of words that will leave you breathless.

I believe these two women have achieved the holy grail of poetry and performance with A Mills and Boon Swoon – they have expressed the unutterable and universalized the intensely personal, illustrating in increments what is all but incomprehensible, showing just how a love so good can go so wrong.

There is a lot that is ultimately sad about this show, devastating even, but it still makes you want to fall in love all over again. It is an absolute delight from start to finish. I had a smile on my face the whole way through, even when witnessing the tremendous hurt of a fragile love falling apart”.

Here’s what audience members have had to say about A Mills & Boon Swoon.

“Mills and Boon Swoon finds sublime moments of truth, painful and joyous. The story telling is downright honest and the delivery, captivating. Performance poetry often goes full throttle, leaving the heart of the words back on the page. Jackson and Turcot capture a whole lot of heart and bring it beautifully to the stage in a moving story of a relationship found and then lost.”

–           Allison Browning

“Amazing chemistry between the two women. Betsy’s voice is like liquid silk and Eleanor’s expressions are intense. The passion was palpable and the rock n roll romance was uplifting. Such intimacy in a public space rare and powerful to witness. Such talented women. Wow. I feel so grateful to have experienced this. This show MUST go on the road!!”

–           Cinova

“I just saw the 6:30 show of A Mills and Boon Swoon at Long Play tonight. I just had to tell you that I was utterly riveted. The show completely blew my heart and mind. Thank you!”

–          Olivia Goodall

Since rejigging our selves in a more theatre-based format, we have performed at the Anywhere Theatre Festival and even had a nice review from the Anywhere Theatre Festival team, who reassured us that the person I thought was asleep, was in fact

listening with his eyes closed, for the words were so rich and evocative that you didn’t want to miss a thing.

And then effervescent blogger Bri Lee, probably shocked the pants of her mother when she blogged,

I have to mention too, that it’s a love story (but so much more than that) between two women, and I’m not gay, but I was totally engrossed. I’m going to be honest and embarrass myself here and say that prior to last night I didn’t give a lot of thought to queer film because I presumed I wouldn’t be totally engaged. And so now I realise what a STUPID FUCK I was to think that and I feel like my universe of potential interests just exploded. I mean the sexy parts were SO SEXY. I feel like anyone who saw She Stole My Every Rock and Roll who was actually interested in women must have just creamed.

While Nerissa Rowan from Arts Hub, described the show as,

“…honed to perfection for its Anywhere Theatre Festival season.

Betsy and Eleanor are easy to listen to, with rich smooth voices that draw you into the domestic drama. Much like the famous Elizabethan playwrights, these two poets tell a moving story using rhythm and rhyme, delivered in a natural style.

The text is part conversation, part internal monologue, bound together with a tempestuous undercurrent of emotion. While they haven’t pressed a record, zines of the show are available to help unravel those intriguing moments of overlapping text.

She Stole My Every Rock and Roll is a pleasure to watch, even at its most heartbreaking.

4.5 out of 5 starts


she stole my

By Eleanor Jackson

Eleanor Jackson is a Filipino Australian poet, performer, arts producer, cyclist, writer, gal about town, feminist, freewheeler, and friend.