Red and Boiling
- Gareth K Vile
- 23 August 2018
Queer cabaret with heart and vigour
Queerness – claimed by many but often a shorthand for diverse identities with a touch of hedonism – is explicitly expressed throughout this double-drag adventure into the experience of queer womyn that has time for cheeky fun and serious reflection on hardships and prejudice. Joyful hosted by Hasadick and Rosay, Red and Boiling features a selection of verbatim conversations taken from the company's massive collection, available online and covering a gamut of women's experience.
Despite having a laugh at the complexities of gender identity, Red and Boiling is inclusive, even allowing the mothers of the women to express their anxieties through Hasadick's alter-ego. If the Jewishness is more caricatured than other identities, it provides a foundation for the short monologues, which are backed by shadow-puppetry, and a show that is filled with rapid-fire humour. Only an audience interaction segment sags, but this is quickly rescued, not least by the appearance of the puppeteer who explains how intersectionality can be an opportunity for multiple prejudices to perform their oppressive attitudes on one person.
Hasadick encourages the audience to invite queer womyn to see the show, but Red and Boiling marries its humour, seriousness and social responsibility so precisely that it allows the multiple voices to speak truth that will educate and entertain those of any gender identity and none: its effortless embodiment of queerness insists that drag hasn't entirely been occupied by the mainstream and its more ramshackle moments only add to the sense of the duo's determination to remain independent and dynamic.
Venue 13, until Aug 25, 1.15pm, £10 (£8).