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Podcast: Digging deep with Auto-Engrain

We Are Bosstress’ Helena Collins O’Connor on Auto-Engrain

This week’s guest on our Runn Radio show was Helena Collins O’Connor from We Are Bosstress. Helena is the writer and performer of Auto-Engrain, a play that takes place in Kate’s therapy session as she delves into her past and tries to piece together how that past has lead her to now. It tackles themes of coercive beheaviour, deomestic abuse, toxic relationships and female masturbation.

We chat about those themes and why theatre is so vital in starting conversations. We also discuss whether we are just a little too prudish about discussing certain things – yes, we mean female masturbation, but also nudity on stage.


King’s Head Theatre, 15 – 19 November

Botanist Kate finally decides it’s high time she laid it all out in therapy!

Exploring how a simple thing like an ex can be embedded into the mind so everything becomes automatically engrained as normal… but it isn’t normal, is it? Kate thought so, until now.

Directed by Ella Faye Donley, Auto-Engrain is a harrowing and blunt re-telling of a woman’s experience of a past relationship and how she got to now. No sugar coating allowed. Written and performed by Helena Collins O’Connor, WE ARE BOSSTRESS presents a semi-autobiographical piece containing elements of humour with an essence of factual fiction.

The show debuted at Clapham Fringe Festival and one of the only shows to be extended. lt then transferred the The Pleasance Theatre London. Founded in 2021 WE ARE BOSSTRESS was created not only as a theatre company but a platform to discuss and tackle the difficult subjects we as a society face on a daily basis. By using theatre, the company aims to create a shared empowerment for audience members and other creatives to The theatre company plans to release a series of workshops next year for universities alongside the show as part of an education platform on creating theatre in a safe space from real experiences.

Further information and bookings here.

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