Review – Confessions of a Dancewhore, Oval House

Saturday 20 October 2007

Blame Agency Phil. Thinking he was doing Andrew a favour by getting him out the house, he booked two tickets to see Confessions of a Dancewhore at the Oval House.

According to the blurb:

Fusing comedy, burlesque, drag and new media performance Confessions of A Dancewhore explores the contradictions and clichés of queer life.

Politics and pop culture meet in this foul-mouthed theatrical cabaret – an accomplished and vivid queer solo performance for everyone who has ever felt like an ‘other’.

Since its first airing at Oval House as a sell-out FiRST BiTES work-in-progress, Michael Twaits has been developing Confessions of A Dancewhore with his mentor Bette Bourne, the renowned veteran of queer theatre and founder of British vaudeville drag troupe Bloolips.

Oh dear. So many questions. What is “queer theatre”? (Andrew thinks there’s something a bit queer about all theatre) And why?

From the first moments Andrew could tell it going to be “about notions of identity” and so it turned out to be. Actually it seems to have been mostly about Michael Twaits’ identity and came across as the most insular, self-obsessed piece of theatre that Andrew has seen in a long while.

Mercifully short at just 60 minutes, the show (to be fair) did employ some quite good video effects (videos of Michael Twaits mostly).

But it didn’t go anywhere and as Mr Twaits “reinvented” Cell Block Tango from Chicago and “re-appropriated” Somewhere That’s Green from Little Shop of Horrors, Andrew’s horror turned to resentment and thence to idle  “imaginings” of what might ensue if he tipped off the Performing Rights Society.

Andrew hadn’t seen Agency Phil for quite a few months and he predicts it quite a few more months may pass before he accepts another invitation to the theatre from him.

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