Jake Bugg at Brighton Dome
Arts
37 views
37 views

Jake Bugg at Brighton Dome

Matthew Nicholls - April 19, 2018
127 Views
1 Comments

What does it mean to be a man? – Testosterone review

Dynamic theatre company Rhum & Clay blew audiences away at Hove’s The Old Market last week with a daring venture into the culture of toxic masculinity. Testosterone is inspired by the true story of the show’s writer and lead actor Kit Redstone; walking into a men’s changing room for the first time at the age of 33, the transgender artist is confronted with the contradiction of navigating a masculine identity in opposition to the “glorious cancer” of patriarchy which he has been acutely aware of all of his life. What emerges is a queer biomythography that asks what does it mean to be a man in 21st century Britain?

A stripped back set and tightknit four-man cast together construct the archetypal changing room scene in all its simplicity and banality. Warped mirrors upstage emphasise their quest for self-actualisation, but also the mechanisms in society that confuse that process with their refractions and presuppositions.

Testosterone’s modest stylistics allow for the ambition of its content to shine through; we are faced with a show that is unrelentingly inquisitive, that’s scope and direction will only grow as time passes. Together the four characters journey through an amorphous landscape of identity, facing questions of the violence we assume is inherent to masculinity, of the fetishisation of androgyny, of the phallocentrism of gym culture that walks a steady path between hypermasculinity and homosexuality.


Image Credit: Richard Davenport

Redstone’s potent observations on society are hauled onto the stage kicking and screaming in all their loud energy and absurdity. Transphobic humour is reclaimed and turned on its head, as the show delves into the hilarity of heteronormative society. Gym nuts handle their protein shakes in inarguably masturbatory gestures. Their antics are excessive and overblown to the point they resemble ape-like wild beasts – the phenomenal physical theatre artistic directors and performers Julian Spooner and Matthew Wells offer is as funny as it is impressive. Again and again we as an audience are overwhelmed by the chemistry, dynamism and comradery that shines through what is – though in a way an intimate and personal story – at its heart an exploration of men as a community, and how they construct male identities and male spaces amongst themselves.

Drag, dance-theatre and a scattering of powerful soliloquies demonstrate Redstone’s and Rhum & Clay’s masterfully intelligent grasp of how contemporary theatre can operate within expansive new territories of cultural and political thought. Their astounding creativity, consistently informed by queer feminist theory and contemporary debates, smashes boundaries and asks questions in a manner that is so entertaining and energising, it had the whole audience on its feet.

 

Get the best viral stories straight into your inbox!

Don't worry, we don't spam
Jake Bugg at Brighton Dome
Arts
37 views
37 views

Jake Bugg at Brighton Dome

Matthew Nicholls - April 19, 2018
Should Instrumental Skill Still Matter?
Arts
50 views
50 views

Should Instrumental Skill Still Matter?

Rob Smith - April 19, 2018
Sussex student takes show to Brighton Fringe
Arts
60 views
60 views

Sussex student takes show to Brighton Fringe

Georgia Grace - April 18, 2018
What’s wrong with the literary canon?
Arts
51 views
51 views

What’s wrong with the literary canon?

Shiri Reuben - April 18, 2018

One Comment

  1. Pingback: What does it mean to be a man? – Testosterone review – Words By Georgia Grace

Leave a Reply

Join the Badger Team

Apply today!

Latest Posts

Jake Bugg at Brighton Dome
Arts
37 views
Arts
37 views

Jake Bugg at Brighton Dome

Matthew Nicholls - April 19, 2018

Following the release of his Fourth Studio album ‘Hearts that Strain’ in September 2017, Jake Bugg decided he wanted an intimate tour, and that is exactly what…

Should Instrumental Skill Still Matter?
Arts
50 views
Arts
50 views

Should Instrumental Skill Still Matter?

Rob Smith - April 19, 2018

I am not advocating that all music, no matter how little talent is required, is by default innovative. I will eagerly admit that much of the bland,…

Sussex student takes show to Brighton Fringe
Arts
60 views
Arts
60 views

Sussex student takes show to Brighton Fringe

Georgia Grace - April 18, 2018

  Final year English and Drama student Sophie Pester will be taking her original stage show A Glass Half Empty to Brighton Fringe next month. First performed…

What’s wrong with the literary canon?
Arts
51 views
Arts
51 views

What’s wrong with the literary canon?

Shiri Reuben - April 18, 2018

This elusive and slightly archaic category, 'the literary canon' seeps into what we know and what we think we know about 'good' and 'bad' literature. On a simple…

For students, where does work end and rest begin?
Features
68 views
Features
68 views

For students, where does work end and rest begin?

Lucy Pegg - April 17, 2018

Print Production Editor Lucy Pegg examines the difficult balance between work and rest for students. In an environment that blurs the line between productivity and recreation, can…

Cambridge Analytica: did Facebook share your personal data?
Science
56 views
Science
56 views

Cambridge Analytica: did Facebook share your personal data?

Luke Richards - April 14, 2018

The last couple of weeks have been tough for Facebook, as it reels from the public scrutiny it has received over its lackadaisical protection of personal data.…

Brighton Fringe comic Joseph Morpurgo on satire, Frankenstein and his fictitious nine-hour, one-man show
Arts
88 views
Arts
88 views

Brighton Fringe comic Joseph Morpurgo on satire, Frankenstein and his fictitious nine-hour, one-man show

Georgia Grace - April 13, 2018

At The Badger we sat down with multi-talented comic, three-time Chortle Award winner and Edinburgh Fringe favourite Joseph Morpurgo to discuss his show Hammerhead. Following a three-week…

Amritsar: 99 years later and still no apology
Comment
100 views
Comment
100 views

Amritsar: 99 years later and still no apology

William Singh - April 12, 2018

99 years ago on Friday, one British general marched his soldiers into an enclosed garden in the vicinity of the holy Golden Temple and sealed off the…

Talking disability, identity and inclusion through dance – Candoco preview
Arts
96 views
Arts
96 views

Talking disability, identity and inclusion through dance – Candoco preview

Georgia Grace - April 12, 2018

Candoco are a company of disabled and non-disabled dancers who, for the past 25 years, have challenged ideas about what dance can be and who gets to…

Voodoo preview
Arts
58 views
Arts
58 views

Voodoo preview

Ricardo Reverón Blanco - April 12, 2018

“[A] science fiction that addresses the desire, confusion and responsibility felt as individuals, who are also symbols of many long-persecuted people.” (Quoted from Alexandrina Hemsley and Jamila…

Interview with Chris Watson: Take a trip to No Man’s Land this spring
Lifestyle
141 views
Lifestyle
141 views

Interview with Chris Watson: Take a trip to No Man’s Land this spring

Louisa Streeting - April 6, 2018

Sound recordist, Chris Watson, spoke to The Badger about his new installation piece featured in the Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts until 13 April 2018. From…

“A moving symbol of cooperation and humanity” – COAL review
Arts
181 views
Arts
181 views

“A moving symbol of cooperation and humanity” – COAL review

William Singh - March 31, 2018

“This is not a show. It’s something else”, we’re told. Gary Clarke’s dance performance of the life and decline of Britain’s mining communities is certainly something else.…

Brighton’s craft beer festival returns in April for third year
Lifestyle
179 views
Lifestyle
179 views

Brighton’s craft beer festival returns in April for third year

Louisa Streeting - March 28, 2018

Brighton will become the hub of craft beer in more than a dozen pubs from April 27-29. The Brighton Tap Takeover returns for a third year bringing…

Young blood promotes brain regeneration
Science
125 views
Science
125 views

Young blood promotes brain regeneration

Nikolaos Manesis - March 28, 2018

On the "growing old is natural" vs "it should be medically reversed" debate, vampires have crossed the picket line from the get-go and scientists have just proven…

The educational psychology of children with autism
Science
149 views
Science
149 views

The educational psychology of children with autism

Nikolaos Manesis - March 28, 2018

The scientific field of educational psychology studies the relationship between learning processes and the individual differences in cognitive development, motivation and intelligence. The majority of children are…

Stand Up & Slam review
Arts
141 views
Arts
141 views

Stand Up & Slam review

Alex Leissle - March 28, 2018

Sometimes the best experiences are those you initially question. Stand Up & Slam is one such idea, for it is a resounding triumph of an evening. Hosted…

Organisms, self-understanding and sacrifice in Rambert’s production at Theatre Royal Brighton
Arts
162 views
Arts
162 views

Organisms, self-understanding and sacrifice in Rambert’s production at Theatre Royal Brighton

Ricardo Reverón Blanco - March 24, 2018

Goat.-Rambert-Dancers-FrontCentre-Daniel-Davidson.-©-Hugo-Glendinning Rambert delivered a series of fluid performances where human bodies became elegant oscillations, much like the metallic wall used on stage to divide the dancers in…

SMuTS presents ‘Jekyll & Hyde’ review
Arts
230 views
Arts
230 views

SMuTS presents ‘Jekyll & Hyde’ review

Georgia Grace - March 23, 2018

Excitement and anticipation were running high Wednesday evening at the Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts (ACCA) for the opening night of Sussex Musical Theatre Society’s (SMuTS’s)…

SU Election coverage – Dead Slate: all women elected for third consecutive year at Sussex
Campus News
177 views
Campus News
177 views

SU Election coverage – Dead Slate: all women elected for third consecutive year at Sussex

Jordan Wright - March 23, 2018

The results are in for this year's Students' Union election, which saw 30 candidates running to be the full-time elected representatives of the student body at Sussex.…

Academic Armchair: ‘Cinderella, you shall go to the ball”: a conversation with Ketan Jha
Features
160 views
Features
160 views

Academic Armchair: ‘Cinderella, you shall go to the ball”: a conversation with Ketan Jha

Devin Thomas - March 23, 2018

In this week’s edition of the Academic Armchair the Features team sat down with Ketan Jha, an associate tutor of Sussex Law School. Alongside his work in…