American Herstory brings the female side of history to life

Bbieu introduces her performance for American Herstory. (Holly Bernstein/DD)

An all-female cast of singers, storytellers and poets took the stage for American Herstory on Saturday night to tell stories related to women’s history.

Space 55 hosted, among others, local performers Hattie Jean Hayes, Marna Kay, Sarah Maria Rainier, Heather “Bbieu” Lasceter and a performer with the stage name “Pina”. The show’s topics ranged from American Girl dolls to the French Revolution.

During her performance, Sarah Maria Rainer discussed a zine she put together in 1990.

“We were working on the zine ‘Begging for More’. It was a radical feminist zine about things that were going on in Phoenix,” Rainer said.

Pina used underwear to symbolize her family’s lineage in the performance.

“I’m really into symbolism, and I was trying to connect this symbolism of our lineage together,” Pina said.

Performer Pina uses underwear to symbolize her family's lineage. (Holly Bernstein/DD)
Performer Pina uses underwear to symbolize her family’s lineage. (Holly Bernstein/DD)

One of the performers branched out from American history and celebrated other females in history. Heather Bbieu Lasceter just recently got into musical performing, and was inspired to present a song about the female peasantry revolting and storming the Palace of Versailles — a topic in which she is interested.

“We don’t get a lot of French history in America, in the first place, and women’s roles in the French Revolution are even less mentioned,” Lasceter said.

American Herstory was a one night show, but Pina has plans to travel to Scotland to perform another one-woman show called Pinhead Number One, which premiered at Space 55.

“That’s the biggest fringe festival,” she said. “You self-produce, I self-produce.  My grandfather… was actually part Scottish, so I’m being drawn to go to Scotland.”

Correction: September 13, 2016: An earlier version of the story quoted Pina as talking about a “French festival.” It has been correctly updated to “fringe festival.”

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