Penelope has over 20 years experience as an actress in stage, radio, television and voiceovers. Her initial training began at Elmhurst Ballet School, and then continued at Guildford School of Acting. On graduating she made her professional debut playing opposite Tommy Steele in Chaplin:The Musical at the Oxford Fire Station.
UK national tours include: Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?, Present Laughter, Brief Encounter, The Railway Children and Iris in The Lady Vanishes, which she co-produced.
Repertory theatre work includes: How the Other Half Loves, Absent Friends (Mill at Sonning Theatre), The Browning Version, Dick Barton:Special Agent, The Lady Vanishes, Crooked Wood, Move Over Mrs Markham, Love From a Stranger, Green for Danger, Climbing the Walls (Jill Freud & Company), 147, Blood Pressure and Him, Her & Them (INK Festival), the title role in Pinocchio (Torch Theatre, Milford Haven), Sheringham Summer Repertory Theatre in September Tide, Wait Until Dark, Nobody’s Perfect, A Shot in the Dark and Wife Begins At Forty, Lost and Found (Tristan Bates) The Cage (The Pleasance) Collected Stories (Eye Theatre), Forward to the Right (Greenwich Playhouse), The Lost Voyage of Sinbad (Proteus Theatre Company),
The Caucasian Chalk Circle, Aladdin (Cambridge Arts Theatre) and The Great British Musicals Event (Royal Albert Hall).
International work includes Butterflies Are Free (Vienna’s English Theatre), Louise in the premiere of Pushing Limits (Haugesund Theatre, Norway), and Cathy in Forgive Me Father (Mind the Gap, New York).
Films include: The Mapping of Contour Lines, The Guide, The Foreseeable Future of Jack and Bloody Nigel Havers.
Radio include: In Search of Lost Time, The Professor, The American Senator, Heartbreaker and Fifteen Minutes of Fame.
As a writer, Penelope’s debut play Pigeons sold out to five star reviews at the Hen & Chickens Theatre in London in 2019, with Marlene Sidaway and Max Fricker. She has also written a two hander called Mama, based on early motherhood.
She most recently enjoyed working with the fabulous Scene & Heard charity, where she played Jlana the Jellyfish!
by Penelope Rawlins
Is communication really improving in the 21st Century?
Under the watchful gaze of a pair of amorous pigeons, a park bench proves an unlikely venue for a pivotal meeting of minds between an elderly lady and a young man struggling with relationship issues and embracing his true self.
Separated by a brace of generations and life choices, these passing strangers nonetheless bridge the perceived technological and misconceived divide and prosper from each other’s wisdom, proving that good ol’ fashioned face to face conversation and social media need not be antagonists, and that we’re never too old or young to learn about what it is to be human.
Penelope produced her first written play Pigeons at the Hen & Chickens Theatre for the Camden Fringe 2019 to sold out performances and 5 star reviews. It was directed by Dugald Bruce-Lockhart and starred Marlene Sidaway (from BAFTA nominated series MUM) and was the professional debut for Max Fricker.
“Layers of dialogue, unfolding of story, beautiful characters, Rawlins has done it all. If theatre is about human interaction then Pigeons is an absolutely amazing example.” *****
Penelope’s second play MAMA, is a two hander exploring the challenges of new motherhood, with many voices!