Valiant is an hour of verbatim stories from women who have experienced war, adapted from the book Valiant War and Exile by Sally Hayton-Keeva who collected interviews from women across the globe.

It is harrowing material but its honesty is vitally important

Thirteen stories are told from many different conflicts including Nazi Germany, Vietnam, Hiroshima and Afghanistan. The four actors all give understated performances that do credit to the stories they tell. They are poised, and though they are conveying overwhelming emotions of pain, anger, horror and fear in their stories, they never over-act or tip into melodrama.

The stories told range from the horror of a mother and daughter at Auschwitz, a badly burnt survivor of Hiroshima, an air hostess who worked on military flights to and from Vietnam, to wives caught up in the civil conflicts in Ireland. It is harrowing material but its honesty is vitally important.

Interspersed between the stories are bits of interviews typed out in real time on a projected screen. Sadly the text is too small and the time given too short to allow us to read these before the narratives pick up again.

In telling their own stories, the women’s strength and determination are revealed through their personal descriptions of the tragedies they endured. The actors do justice to these accounts of suffering by giving attention to the details in their changing stances and accents.

Valiant is a gripping example of theatre which forces us to confront the harsh realities of war by telling stories we would rather not hear. Hayton-Keeva wanted to see whether there are women who have been affected by war in the same way as men. She concludes with ‘I found them easily and I found them everywhere’.

Reviews by Lettie Mckie

Udderbelly Festival

Austentatious: An Improvised Jane Austen Novel

The Vaults

Skin A Cat

The Vaults


Orange Tree Theatre

The Rolling Stone

Charing Cross Theatre


London Theatre Workshop

Through The Mill


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

Powerful documentary and theatrical performance chronicling the role of women in war. From victim to perpetrator to peacemaker, and from Afghanistan to Japan. Meet thirteen women who have fought, struggled and survived in a century of conflict. Adapted for the stage by Lanna Joffrey from the book of verbatim interviews Valiant Women in War and Exile, by Sally Hayton-Keeva, this new piece of writing explores the perspective of these thirteen women and how war has shaped their lives. Most of us know the history of war as men see it; in Valiant, women have their say.

Most Popular See More

The Lion King

From £36.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Phantom of the Opera

From £31.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £13.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Les Miserables

From £22.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Witness for the Prosecution

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets