Baring the Weight

A publicity clipping for Baring the Weight in the Guardian (1979):

‘It has to be cheaper than a health farm and stands a chance of being more fun than fasting: an itinerant band of professional actresses and writers has formed has formed the Spare Tyre Theatre Company to tour a play about compulsive eating called Baring the Weight. Each of the participants has suffered from extreme fatness or thinness herself and the play is their way of spreading the message that eating disorders have to do with psychological and social problems: calorie counting will profit you nothing.’ (‘Playing slim’, Guardian, 27 August 1979)

An excerpt on Baring the Weight and its inspiration:

‘We began as a group committed to taking the anti-diet message to a wider audience. Our first three shows were full of sketches about cream cakes and plastic track suits, and our songs about the agonies of life as a compulsive eater:
I’m putting it off ’til I’m thinner
All of this just isn’t me
I’ll stop being a mess and become a success
But I’m putting it off – ’til I’m seven stone three
We always wrote songs out of our own experience. All of us had been that woman sitting in her room, feeling fat, unable to do anything with her life until she’d slimmed down to the magic weight.’ (from The Spare Tyre Songbook)

Susie Orbach on Baring the Weight:

‘I sat sobbing my eyes out, jaws aching from laughter, exhilarated by Spare Tyre’s first play Baring the Weight. Thinking of it now, I recall the feeling of lightness and freedom that I and the rest of the audience felt in seeing our experience accurately understood and compassionately expressed. I couldn’t believe what they had achieved. It was so wonderful.’ (from the preface to The Spare Tyre Songbook)

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