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THE FOPS — A NEW PLAY ABOUT QUEER IDENTITY BY JACK SHAMBLIN
March 23, 7:00 pm-9:30 pm
THE FOPS by Jack Shamblin bubbled up out of recent work-in-progress performances at Dixon Place. Sharing his new script and his birthday at the same time, he welcomes you to an artful reading, live music, and some good pink cake.
“Partying too hard, the aging Queer Monty time travels to Victorian New York’s Paresis Hall, an all-male bordello. Engaging with the riff-raff, men-who-love-men, intellectuals, and twisted moralists; he confronts the frailty of his proud gay identity. Homo present meets past, and the future is up for grabs.”
Jack has come a long, long way from that Bible-Belt Eastern Oklahoma town where he grew up, a two-hour drive from the headquarters of the Ku Klux Klan. Back in the eighties, when he drummed-up enough courage to tell a friend he was gay, she told him he would “die of Aids and then roast for eternity.” His adoring mother went homophobic and threatened disownment. Depression followed, Jack was locked inside himself with so much to say but with no vehicle of expression. He calls it his “silent-state-of-Bohemia: a place full of singers without voices, dancers without legs and writers without hands.”
Fast-forward to 2018 and meet the new and evolved Jack/Mia — international writer, actor, director, comedian, performance artist, and activist. He’s created with Caryl Churchill, Kate Bornstein, Alexis Arquette, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jayne Atkinson, Theodora Skipitares, Basil Twist, Ellie Covan, and Mark Wing-Davey. His plays performed at La MaMa, Dixon Place, HERE, and abroad. An anthology of his work Queering The Stage is on the shelves of BGSQD. He not only found his voice, his legs and his hands, but he clarified his direction as a queer leader and role model in the arts.
(This bio, crafted originally by Bob Criso for theatre blog Hi! Drama, has been edited by Mia Kunter Productions.)
Photograph by Bob Criso, from left to right: Graceann Dorse, Daniel Diaz, Goldie Luxe, Kevin Mimms, Michael Witkes, Brandi Azinionae, Nicholas Gorham, Matt “Ugly” McGlade.