THE PENIS MONOLOGUES
conceived, compiled and performed by Tommy Truss
[1 hr 30 mins; Saturdays only]
at S and Mís cocktail and lounge bar, 176 Cuba St, Wellington
From 16 Feb 2013 to 9 Mar 2013
Reviewed by: John Smythe;
REAL STORIES WRITTEN BY REAL MEN ABOUT REAL PENISES
The first thing Truss says about this piece is, “Obviously it's my version of the Vagina Monologues” and he adds with a laugh, “but I've never read or seen The Vagina Monologues.”
He continues, “I was in the states when they first came out and it was being performed everywhere, from Broadway to women's shelters and I thought how great it was to talk about things that don't always get voiced in the open. And in fact that's still going on... the fear and non communication around ‘private parts'... interesting choice of words right? In the States recently a female representative was banned from her own capital building because she said the word vagina on the house floor and they were legislating on abortion!”
He continues, “Even though in most cultures men are still dominant that doesn't mean that they think or are self reflective, let alone soft or vulnerable, and for me The Penis Monologues is a response to that climate and condition.”
Like Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues, Truss sent out a call to blokes asking them to write original works based on their experiences, stories and relationship with their penis. “What I got back has been amazing, there're confessionals and rants and raves, sex tales and facts, I've assembled a joke section and... well, it's quite a mix.”
Also like The Vagina Monologues, Truss's show can be produced in many ways, from a solo evening or a reading, to a performance with multiple actors. There are many offshoots of this concept, “The DickLogues”, “The Viagra Monologues” which was produced in Wellington a few years past, there was a spoof of Ensler's work in the States as well, but Truss is clear: “This is not a satire of Ensler's work, nor a comment on it, I was inspired by the idea of talking about something that doesn't always get talked about.”
This will be the world premiere of Truss's “The Penis Monologues” and this incarnation is a one man show where each monologue is told by a different character, from the lisping queen to the testosterone charged stud.
Following in the Fringe's footprint of performances happening throughout Wellington, Truss set about to find “male dominated spaces that aren't used as theatres.” His response was less than favorable. “I went to at least a dozen spaces that cater almost exclusively to men, from clothing stores to various men-focused-clubs, and the general response was, ‘this is not inline with our product.' One person even said ‘I don't want to be associated with penises even though this is a men's clothing store'.”
Truss ended up finding the perfect spot though, The Basement of S and M's bar on Cuba St. as he says, “it'll be great, the audience can grab a cocktail and hear some cocktales, or have a cocktail and grab a cocktale if so inspired.”
SHOWTIMES 8pm all four Saturdays in the Fringe Festival,
February 16, 23 March 2 & 9
S and M's cocktail and lounge bar 176 Cuba St.
TICKETS: General $15, concession/groups (6 or more) $13, Fringe Addict Card $10
Email email@example.com with name, number of tickets required and date of show
or buy them at Made Marion, 17 Marion St.
or on the night of the show at the door.
Limited number of tickets available per show.
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