FRINGE FEST REVIEWS: Phaedra's Bed; Understudy; Unsex'd.
"By one of those happy accidents that often occurs at Fringe Festivals, I saw three plays that were strongly connected thematically while being wildly different in style and content. Much to my delight, they were all three excellent!"
There are a number of queer artists and queer themed productions at this year's Atlantic Fringe Festival. Established local queer artists such as Annie Valentina (Alien), GaRRy Williams (Phaedra's Bed), and Richie Wilcox (Unsex'd) are well represented. The always interesting Bill Wood has two offerings (Pissing from Windows & Bill Wood is Magic) in this year's Festival! You can also catch some rising queer-identified musical theatre talents on display in the Joss Whedon, Buffy-the-Vampire-Slayer musical, Once More with Feeling.
"There are two more performances of Les Dialogues des carmélites, I hope you will avail yourself of the opportunity to see a strong, simple production of a complex, beautiful opera."
" ' Sondheim eexpresses a consistent concern in Sondheim's plays with the individual or group excluded from the mainstream, and what the consequences of that exclusion are for the community as a whole. … Ironically, the most rousing number in West Side Story is the Puerto Ricans' celebration of the "America" into which they will never be assimilated: ‘Life is all right in America / If you're all white in America.’ "
Dialogues des carmélites, set during the French Revolution, as a convent of Carmelite nuns await arrest and execution at the hands of revolutionaries, has been linked by some critics to the troubles of post-war France. Poulenc himself identified the fate of the soprano lead, Blanche de la Force, to the long suffering of his partner, Lucien Roubert, who died of pleurisy in 1955, on the very day Poulenc completed the piano version of the Dialogues.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) set a precedent on human rights in sport when it banned South Africa from participating in the Olympics in 1964, to protect the Games from racial discrimination. Why then is it refusing to take action now when the rights of LGBT people are under threat?
"I'm sick of being asked why we have to flaunt our sexuality during Pride. As if we should just take for granted that repressed attitudes about sex are a good thing, that our bodies and our pleasures are a toxin that can only be accepted by the mainstream if tightly controlled. As if we need to learn about healthy sexuality from straight people, rather than the other way around." - Kevin Kindred
FREE SHOWING OF UNITED IN ANGER --A HISTORY OF THE AIDS COALITION TO UNLEASH POWER (ACT UP) IN NEW YORK CITY. This will be followed by a brief discussion on recovering AIDS Activist history here in Halifax facilitated by Alexis Shotwell and Gary Kinsman of the new AIDS Activist History Project which is collecting and documenting AIDS Activist history in a number of places across Canada.
Ms. Zaman and Ms. Latiff have important, beautiful, witty, and graceful things to share with us. I hope Halifax audiences will avail themselves of the opportunity to listen.
“It’s funny, when a child becomes far enough away, or got all the running out of them that suddenly everything you hated just cause it reminded you of your parents - of your home. Well, there seems to come a time when you start to love things for no better reason than just cause they remind you of your parents - of your home.”
- Country Song: a queer ballad