An imagined meeting between two 1960s celebrities that asks what might have happened if two female visionaries with very different methods had locked horns forms the basis of a stage show at the Omnibus theatre in Clapham.
Femme Fatale draws parallels between 1960s feminism and today, and throws into light how much further there is to go.
Set in 1968 in New York, Nico, singer with The Velvet Underground and Andy Warhol’s Superstars, waits to shoot his latest movie when her Chelsea hotel room is invaded by radical feminist Valerie Solanas.
Ms Solanas wants the celebrity’s help to spread her message of female revolution, but Nico only craves drugs to insulate her from her pain.
A darkly comic battle begins between two iron-willed opponents who could change their futures, if only they would become allies.
Valerie Solanas was a radical feminist, best known for writing the SCUM Manifesto (Society for Cutting Up Men), and attempting to murder Andy Warhol in 1968.
Writer and performer Polly Wiseman said: “I’m bored to death by likeable female characters – which is why I wanted to write about Teutonic junkie Nico and ‘crazed feminazi’ Valerie Solanas.
“Both revolutionaries in their different ways, their legacies have been all but ignored in favour of more compliant and prettily-packaged women.
“But 30 years after they both died, their work continues to inspire many artists and activists.
“As hilarious as they were uncompromising, their views on men, music, fame and feminism are outrageous and deadpan, tender and truculent.
“More than 100 years since women got the vote, recent events in America and at home remind us that our right to control our bodies and our stories is still not a given.
“The time seems ripe for this reimagining of two female pop culture icons at the epicenter of 1960s cool, battling for control of their own destinies.”