DramaReviewSouth West

Ginger Beer – Wardrobe Theatre, Bristol

Company: Limerence Productions

Reviewer: Julia Beasley

How easy is it to be a gay man? Quite difficult, as it turns out – for Sammy and El at least, a couple of queer flatmates who are as different as chalk and cheese. Whilst El is a bitchy drag queen always on the prowl for sex, Sammy is a gentler, socially awkward soul yearning for something more than a casual f**k.

This examination of queer men’s identities by Bristol-based touring theatre company Limerence Productions is nicely staged in the Wardrobe’s intimate atmosphere. The one-hour performance romps through elements of gay male culture – including lads, twinks, divas, saunas, grindr, chemsex parties, dick pics, and bare arses  – and is both funny and profane. 

Ultimately, though, the aggressive promiscuity of stereotypical ‘ginger beer’ life is portrayed as sad, bad and dangerous. A teenager is turned onto injectable drugs; a casual acquaintance turns out to be a rapist. The glitter of aggressive promiscuity tarnishes, as the characters begin to crave intimacy and sober sex.

Ginger Beer explores the difficulties of the gay male scene with lots of heart. It may not always be easy being gay, but when was a good man ever easy to find?

Runs until 25 October 2018

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The Southwest team is under the editorship of Holly Spanner. The Reviews Hub was set up in 2007. Our mission is to provide the most in-depth, nationwide arts coverage online.

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