Katie Mccullough Talks and Writes

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Wig Out! April 9, 2009

Filed under: London,theatre,Theatre and writing — katiemccullough @ 12:49 pm

Okay, okay so if anyone actually reads this stuff then I can only apologise for being extremely tardy and not writing anything. For a whole month. Soon after I agreed with myself to start this thing I then went and got all busy and spent a lot of time in London actually seeing stuff and reading a lot of plays and then not following up the usual act of writing about them. In short I’ve read, since I last posted, the following:

No One Belongs Her More Than You Miranda July
The Homecoming Harold Pinter
Attempts On Her Life Martin Crimp
Masterpieces Sarah Daniels
Baghdad Wedding Hassan Abdulrazzak
Submission Marthe Blau
Through The Leaves Franz Xaver Kroetz
A View From A Bridge Arthur Miller
Now Or Later Christopher Shinn

And possibly more. Unless people are aching to hear my thoughts on any of the books listed (and please feel free to comment if you do) they shall remain un-reviewed. I’m currently trying to force myself to do a re-write but look where that’s got me, over here writing random lists of which hold no meaning. And to the next list…

I have seen the following at the theatre since I’ve last posted here:

*Richard III Brockley Jack Theatre
*Wig Out Royal Court Theatre
(of which I’ll review later)

And as for films (either watched fresh or revisited):

*Prime
*The Dreamers
*Closer
*Little Children
*Quantum Of Solace
*Two Days in Paris

And to top it all off I wrote a rough 48 hour draft of my new play and have cast it for the rehearsed reading at the ICA. Phew! Quite a lot going on. Oh, and I almost forgot I took part in a sleep experiment. Yes, it seems I do live an exciting life at times.

But on to Wig Out! as I saw it last night….

It’s a breath of fresh air to see the Royal Court put on a production that’s different. And when I say different what I mean is not the traditional ‘Royal Court’ play that deals with important political or racial issues that are rammed down our throat. Wig Out! has the humour, the style and the air of superiority over all of those because that’s what it is. It’s different, it’s stylish and what’s more it’s fun.

Set in the world where primping and preening are something to be held up as religion and the genders get blurred with men merging into women and women being out-bitched by the men. Two households of families are challenged to outwalk each other on the catwalk. It’s The House of Light versus The House of Diabolique. Yes, it’s french, bitch.

The soundtrack and the whole spectacle (which sees the downstairs theatre being transformed into a fashion show set up with a giant glitterball to boot) is fast and furious with rounds of applause being savoured for the speedy delivery of putdowns and break ups. It had people cheering and people laughing and it certainly takes you on a whirlwind tour of the glamourous world of drag queen sub-culture.

Whilst the surroundings and the atmosphere was held up high I couldn’t help but feel that more could have been made of the actual plot. Sure it had its moments where we saw the lust in Eric’s confused eyes and the affections felt towards him by Nina but nothing seemed to draw me in to a degree where it felt like I was being completely swept away. The dotted monologues performed by every character that began, “my abuela wore a wig” soon began to get predictable and tiresome. The pay off at the end was humourous but seemed to be poking fun at it’s own misfortune which I couldn’t tell if I should admire or neglect. It became apparent that each character had their own tragic downfall in their past that aided and furthered their new family life in the House of Light. It all seemed to be doom and gloom and the only light of happiness is short lived and seemed to paint homosexuals in a warped light; as sex hungry, over eager and easily baffled stereotypes. What I enjoyed about Wig Out! was its capacity to entertain and play to the whole house with the extended catwalk staging. The actors challenged what most of the stuffy and suited businessmen usually are subjected to at the Royal Court and I admired the use of music. But what wowed me in one area left me expecting more in the other; what the play gave me in excitement quickly whipped it away in lack of full plot.

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