Edinburgh Showcase 2017: ‘TESTOSTERONE’ by Rhum and Clay Theatre Company and Kit Redstone

Edinburgh Showcase 2017: ‘TESTOSTERONE’ by Rhum and Clay Theatre Company and Kit Redstone


‘Testosterone’ is a collaboration between
Rhum and Clay Theatre Company and myself, Kit Redstone and it’s a show about masculinity through the lens of a transgender man. Well we’ve been a company for six years,
we met in Paris and we’re often known as doing chorus, really physical, playful, slightly ramshackle work. We’re sort of unashamedly populist I guess you could say but without dumbing down or sacrificing anything. A big part of our show is about play and having fun and that interaction with the audience is something that we always try and inject
into all of our work. Initially when we started we hadn’t decided what the show was going to be about, whether it was going to include stories of my transition. The way I work generally is to go into a space with very little ideas to begin with and sort of try and craft a show out of what’s available. So it was a very organic show, it came from me and my stories but also what the other guys in the room gave and thinking what would happen if you put exaggerated versions of all four of us in a confined space. We didn’t know each other very well and you know that’s a great point for drama. ‘Testosterone’ is set in a male gym changing room so we’re sort of penned in like we’re in a boxing ring and at the back of the stage is a huge mirror and obviously in the front there is the audience so there’s really no place to hide, masculinity is under the microscope. It also gave us tremendous ability
to be able to play to the back of the stage, or within private, but it still be public. I guess it’s a show about the inner struggle to discover what it means to be a man and to find your identity, your place in the world and within those five minutes in the changing room we explore stories from my character’s past, fantasies and paranoias and assumptions that he makes about the other men in the room and we’ve crafted this all together so that it creates a very unusual, quite dreamlike,
playful narrative about masculinity and finding out who you are. What’s really nice is that it’s the kind
of show where everybody feels a personal investment, so I think every time we finished the show
and I spoke to people afterwards, whether they were people I knew or other audience members everyone had something to say about it and felt that it related to them and their
world and the men and women around them. So there’s been a lot of enthusiasm in that
way and also a lot of debate. The topic of masculinity, or gender in general but particularly masculinity, is everywhere and that’s what’s great about this show
for us to perform it if anything is because it feels very much now. It feels like a conversation that’s happening now that we are tapping in to and people are really interested and
engaged and have an opinion. It’s not just sort of an abstract show that sits over there, they very much feel like we’re talking about something that’s happening now so yeah, it’s very much connected to a broader discussion that is happening out in the real world.

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