Sound Cistem (4 stars)

Sound Cistem

A straight-forward verbatim message

Featuring two transgender performers, a banging soundtrack and a selection of recordings from trans and non-binary young people, Sound Cistem represents a genre of theatre that barely existed five years ago, the verbatim statement of intent. The explicit intention to present the experience of trans and non-binary through the filter of the clubbing experience, it manages to have a great deal of charm, sensitivity and passion without losing sight of its didactic mission.

Inviting the audience to listen and look, the two performers illustrate the various interviews with funky moves that various capture the elation and frustration of a night-out. The consistent message is an appeal for acceptance, made with articulate fluency and building towards a positive sense of fun and empowerment. The various debates that impress upon trans bodies are both considered and, ultimately, rejected – the debate sometimes identified as an act of oppression that needlessly objectifies life experiences, and the balance of celebration and resistance is artfully choreographed.

It's notable how uncontroversial the voices sound, and the message is hardly militant but a loving embrace of diversity. The show enters into what has become a difficult arena only to remind the audience that it need not be difficult at all, and its worthy aims are tempered by the dynamism of the dance.

ZOO Playground, until 26 Aug, 9.20pm, £10 (£8).

Sound Cistem

  • 4 stars

Plaster Cast Theatre Two transgender performers say 'up yours!' to the gender binary and invite you to their radical dance party! Under disco lights, over pulsing music, a queer celebration takes place. Set in nightclubs, Sound Cistem is an exuberant verbatim show about the cisgender gaze on the transgender body.

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