Happy Birthday Joey!

Moxie KImberley and Josephine Dodds
Moxie KImberley and Josephine Dodds

As today marks what would have been her 100th Birthday, us Moxies want to say Happy Birthday to ‘Joey’.

Josephine Dodds, who is Moxie Kimberley Harvey’s Great Grandmother, is very special to us Moxies as her courageous story inspired many of the scenes in our WW2 inspired outdoor show Sit Back.

From an Irish family from County Mayo, Josephine was one of 8 children. But it was when her family wanted to marry her to a pig farmer that she fled to England. It wasn’t long before her younger brother Jimmy followed her over and as the war took hold he was drafted into work in the British Army as a RAF Navigator.

Jimmy adored his sister and wrote many letters to her. ‘Joey’ was what he called her. Some of these letters feature in the show. Unfortunately Jimmy’s story didn’t end well as he was reported missing in action when a mission went wrong.

Kimberley’s grandmother (Josephine’s daughter) only discovered the letters after her death which included the dreaded telegram announcing Jimmy’s fate. Something which she also never talked about with her family, so we are extra touched that we were allowed access to Josephine’s story.

Unfortunately Josephine never got to see Kimberley dance as she passed away when she was 10 years old but I am sure she would have been proud as punch watching her perform this show.

Sit Back is a dance theatre piece for 4 women and a bench. Celebrating the female work force of WW2 and set in 1942, 4 Trolleybus Clippies are ona reak between shifts. Watch as their imaginations go on a physical journey transforming the space around them.

Words by Kimberley Harvey and Sarah Blanc

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