Bryony Kimmings, a self-described performance artist from London, has made her name tackling thorny subjects with an acerbic wit and sense of fearlessness. She’s starred in a number of her own plays, and a few have featured her loved ones – in 2015’s Fake It ‘Til You Make It, her then-partner Tim Grayburn shared her spotlight in an incisive piece about his experience with clinical depression. Her 2013 play about the sexualisation of young girls and women, Credible Likeable Superstar Role Model, was a two-hander featuring her nine-year-old niece. With 2016’s A Pacifist’s Guide to the War on Cancer, Kimmings set her sights on cancer – how we talk about it, how we treat those who have it, and how the survivors usually never get a word in. Described as a play with songs, it was produced by leading theatre company Complicité. Ahead of its Australian premiere, Limelightcatches up with Bryony Kimmings to talk the play’s inception and influence.

Bryony Kimmings Bryony Kimmings. Photo: Richard Davenport.  

Why did you decide to address the topic of cancer in your latest play?

The producer at Complicité [Judith Dimant] asked me to come in and pitch...