01 October 2013

FRINGE: Black Faggot

MELBOURNE FRINGE 2013
Black Faggot
29 September 2013
Fringe Hub, Rehearsal Room
to 5 October
melbournefringe.com.au


Black Faggot was an audience favourite and award-winner at the recent Auckland Fringe and if this is the kind of theatre that's being made in Auckland, book me a ticket for their next Fringe please.

Sadly, their story is well known. Pacific Islanders are still blacks and gay men are still faggots and together the insult is magnified, especially when it also comes from within the Islander and gay communities. But this isn't an angry work. There's pain and regret, but it's positive, heartfelt and achingly funny.

With impeccable timing and spot-on characterisations, Taofia Pelesasa and Iaheto Ah Hi perform a series of monologues and two-handers that tell stories from all around their communities.  There's a guy who hates the incessant white-girl pop in gay bars, the boy who loves God and tries to pray himself straight, a little brother who just loves his big brother, a romance that brings tears to the most hardened of hearts, and many more people who will stay in your heart long after you leave the theatre.

Black Faggot tells familiar and often-told stories, but it's wonderful to hear them told in a different voice and from a slightly different perspective. And these stories need to keep being told until the need to tell them doesn't exist.

But the success of this show lies in it ultimately being a work about love. The love of lovers, friends, brothers and brothers, family, strangers, (a government that stood up and sang when the marriage equality bill was passed in New Zealand – this isn't in the show, but we don't have a government that even knows how to sing), and now the love of everyone who sees Black Faggot.





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