What inspired you to create this show? Why this story?
As straight forward as it may sound my first gay relationship inspired this piece. I suddenly found myself in situations I’d never experienced in straight relationships, and as frustrating as it was, it’s just as funny looking back. I have an anthropology degree so I always saw myself as someone who was not defined by gender stereotypes, but being with a woman I learned that I’m just as much part of it as anyone else. I suddenly had to redefine myself as a partner, when I no longer had the gender stereotypes to fall back on. Furthermore, I experienced people treating us differently and we became the object of attention without doing anything other than show affection for one another. We were being sexualized for being in love. That was tough. I think this piece can help cast some light on how we see gender and relationships and hopefully the more we do so, it can make it a bit easier for LGBT+ community in the future.
I love to use my experiences from my own life and turn them into stories and scripts. I think the main highlight has been taking some of the episodes that really challenged me throughout my relationships and make them into something we can all laugh at. Not to neglect the importance of it, but instead to not let it control the here and now. If we can’t laugh about it, then what can we do?
Who should see this show?
Anyone who has ever dated anyone or been in a relationship. And if you’ve never dated anyone, but are interested in knowing something about it, this is also the show for you. My show covers not only my experiences with homo-sexual relationship but it also covers my experiences with former straight relationships. I think everyone who sees my show can recognise a thing or two from their own relationship whether that being with or without a same sex partner. And in the end this show is all about having a laugh, so if you like a laugh, this show is for you.
What attracted you to stage this production at The Bread & Roses Theatre?
This is in many ways a very personal piece, so I needed the performance venue to be somewhere with the experience and support of LGBT+ community. This is exactly why The Bread & Roses Theatre was a perfect fit.
I have some wonderful hard-working people on my production. Brenna Warren is my director. Brenna is a fellow MFA International graduate from East15, from Portland, Oregon. Aside from this production, she is currently developing a drama education service called Storytellers UK, so I’m really excited she’s on board.
Stephanie Van Driesen is my producer. She hails from Malaysia. After 10 years performing in musicals, plays, and producing on a slew of original productions in Asia, Stephanie moved to London in 2017 to pursue an MFA in Acting at East 15. Upon graduating with distinction, Stephanie was granted a Tier 1 Exceptional Promise visa by Arts Council England to continue expanding her craft here in the UK and contribute to the arts and culture scene. This is Stephanie's first producing foray in London. She is also currently working on several new writing projects as co-writer and producer. More info on her previous work: www.sfastage.com
What I love about the UK, is the fact that it has multiple fringe festivals that are open to new works. Coming just out of drama school the fringe is a good ground to both create and show the industry who you are as a writer, creator and actor. Furthermore, it is a great opportunity to experiment with a new format of style. Going Straight to Gay is somewhat of an experiment between stand-up comedy and a monologue based performance.
My producer and I hope to take this show on a tour within the next year. Furthermore, I’m currently working on two different film projects and as for the stage I have another show with my former partner, which we hope to set up in the near future.
Going Straight to Gay (or somewhere in-between) runs 2 & 3rd February 2020, 7:30pm - Tickets