Queer’Say April 2015

8 08 2015
Paula Varjack photo:.....

Paula Varjack
Photo: Hannes Früh

Out In South London and Apples and Snakes present Queer’Say, a showcase of queer spoken word hosted by Rosie Wilby. After their performance, Rosie speaks to each artist about their work, life and writing and invites the audience to ask questions. In this first event of 2015, Hannah Chutzpah, Fergus Evans and Paula Varjack shared the stage at the Tate Modern on 19 April.

Hannah Chutzpah describes herself as a performance poet, writer, activist and feminist. Her one-woman show Asking Nicely received five stars at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2014 and will be back there this year from 8-29 AugustHannah‘s poems include Kiss, Snakeskin and Easter 2005. She also joined us on Out in South London on 14 April 2015.

Fergus Evans is a performance artist from Georgia, USA. He has collaborated with leading arts organisations such as Contact and Comma Film in Manchester, the Birmingham Rep and Battersea Arts Centre. His work revolves around growing up in Georgia and his experiences in the UK, among others. Fergus‘s debut poetry collection is called On Euclid Ave.

Paula Varjack is a writer, filmmaker and performance maker. Her art explores social dynamics, subtext, our relationship with cities and identity. The music to Dear Straight Girl is composed by Ludwig Berger. You can catch Paula live again with her show How I became Myself (by Becoming Someone Else) at the Edinburgh Fringe this year between 7-30 August and hear her talking about her work when she came on Out In South London on 31 March 2015.

Here are the highlights together with the Q&As:

Queer'Say April 2015 - Hannah Chutzpah by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

Queer'Say April 2015 - Fergus Evans by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

Queer'Say April 2015 - Paula Varjack by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud


Our next Queer’Say event is on 12 September at the Richmix with Dominic Berry, AJ McKenna and Ernesto Sarezale.

Our thanks go to the Arts Council England, Southwark LGBT network and Southwark Council for supporting this event.

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Listen again: 30 June 2015

1 07 2015

INCITE2-216x300Rosie talks to journalist and playwright Shaun Kitchener about Positive, ahead of its run at the Park Theatre from 7 July – 1 August. Inspired by true stories, the play revolves around Benji, a twenty something Londoner living with HIV. Shaun tells us about his research methods, the article that originally inspired the play and how he came to be playing the role of one of the love interests.

Trudy Howson tells us about INCITE, the LGBT poetry night she hosts at The Phoenix Arts Club. Trudy has been active on the queer and feminist poetry circuit since the 1970s. She recites a poem about heroes that she wrote for this year’s Pride.

Josh Roche is currently directing the world premiere of A Third by award-winning Chicago playwright Laura Jacqmin which has just begun a run in the very intimate surrounds of the Finborough Theatre. This witty play explores the emotional consequences of characters Allison and Paul opening up their relationship. Josh and Rosie discuss how the debate about multiple relationships seems to be opening up and how the dynamic might have been different if the play had centred around a same-sex relationship.

Digital consultant Jo Webber pops in for a chat about the imminent launch of her new app Queer Booth which allows users to give themselves an instant makeover by choosing from a variety of styles including bear, fetish, Victorian, disco and more. She’s holding a launch party on 11 July which you can email her about for info.

30 June 2015 by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

For rights reasons the music is not on the podcast, but here’s what we played on the live show:

1) Owen Pallett: In Conflict from the album In Conflict

2) Holly Lerski: Oh Atoms, Oh Molecules from the album The Wooden House

3) Sarah MacDougall: Grand Canyon from the album Grand Canyon

4) Awna Teixeira: Yellow Moon from the album Wild One

5) Rufus Wainwright: San Francisco from the album Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall

Listen again: 23 June 2015

24 06 2015
Told Look Younger by Stephen Wyatt at the Jermyn Street Theatre

Told Look Younger at the Jermyn Street Theatre   Photo: Simon Annand

Rosie chats to jazz singer and BBC Radio 2 broadcaster Clare Teal over the phone about her recently released 14th studio album At Your Request, working with Van Morrison on his new Duets collection and an upcoming live show with her mini big band at Proms at St Jude’s, Hampstead Garden Suburb on 27 JuneThey also talk about staying clean and dry at Glastonbury Festival which is close to where she lives.

Writer Stephen Wyatt tells us about Told Look Younger, his comedy about sex, love, friendship and growing old which is on at the Jermyn Street Theatre until 4 July. It revolves around three gay friends in their sixties and the chaos it causes in all of their relationships when one of them, Colin, becomes involved with a much younger man. Stephen discusses age-gap relationships, how apps have affected gay male dating and the publicity boost of being tweeted by Stephen Fry.

Comedian Andrew Doyle chats about his show Minimalism! which he is taking to Edinburgh Fringe this year and previewing at London Museum of Comedy. He’s also currently collaborating with acclaimed Northern Irish musician Duke Special on an adaptation of Gulliver’s Travels to be produced at Belfast Lyric Theatre in July. He and Rosie explore the perils of arriving in Edinburgh unprepared and whether all comedians are depressed.

Nuala O’Sullivan is a volunteer and Co-Chair of the London Lesbian and Gay Switchboard, who have just announced Rosie as one of their new patrons. Nuala tells us what it’s like to volunteer in the phoneroom of the LLGS, how young lesbians seem to prefer instant messaging to phoning and gives us the lowdown on their relaunch gala being held at The Waldorf Hotel this Thursday.

With a theatrical adaptation of Sarah Waters’ Tipping the Velvet due to open at the Lyric Hammersmith this September, the classic sapphic saga is being celebrated at Hackney’s Sutton House on 10 July in slightly more alternative fashion by the team behind The Amy Grimehouse events. Mia Pollak and Alex Menace tell us about their new literary strand Late Night Library Club and this tantalising sounding night of drag kings, music hall, raucous performance and dress up. They also explain why the lesbian scene has moved over to East London in recent years.

23 June 2015 by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

For rights reasons the music is not on the podcast, but here’s what we played on the live show:

1) Clare Teal: The Way Young Lovers Do from the album At Your Request

2) Duke Special: Freewheel from the album Adventures in Gramophone 

3) Blondie: Call Me from the album American Gigolo

4) Dusty Limits: Reunion from the album Grin

Listen again: 16 June 2015

19 06 2015

51+lO-pRv2L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell is a hero and inspiration to many within the LGBT community and was honoured a few years ago with a blue plaque at his Southwark home. He chats to Rosie about his memories of the Gay Liberation Front in 1970s London, how Pride has evolved over the years, the debate around whether the gay UKIP group should be allowed to march at this year’s event, the same sex marriage ban in Northern Ireland, LGBTI-inclusive sex education in schools and The Big Gay Pub Quiz – a fundraising event for his Peter Tatchell Foundation taking place on 23 June at Bankside Space and hosted by Timberlina.

Back in February, we were among many people praising director, writer and actress Desiree Akhavan for her wonderfully cool, funny Brooklyn-set film Appropriate Behaviour about a young woman Shirin coming out as bi to her Iranian family. Desiree now lives in London and joins us to promote the forthcoming DVD release on 29 June. She reveals that Shirin is a heightened version of herself and that one of her new projects is a comedy about a lesbian who comes out as bisexual at 30 and starts dating men for the first time.

A Year of Marvellous Ways is the new novel from Sarah Winman, author of the bestselling When God Was a Rabbit. Laura Macdougall talks to Sarah about magic, lighthouses, writing about trauma and outsiders, and how her acting career has influenced her writing. She also reveals the origins of the name Marvellous.

Australian poet, storyteller, educator and performer Candy Royalle tells us what she has in store for her set at our Queer’Say event at Hackney Attic on 21 June. Currently on her Butch Priestess international tour, she blends genres by integrating sound effects via loops pedals and collaborating with film makers. She was motivated to start creating this work as she felt that she had no voice as a queer woman of colour but now feels privileged to travel the world doing what she loves. She performs a short piece entitled Love.

16 June 2015 by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

For rights reasons the music is not on the podcast, but here’s what we played on the live show:

1) Sarah MacDougall: Grand Canyon from the album Grand Canyon

2) Candy Royalle: Loud Noises from the album Frida People

Listen again: 9 June 2015

10 06 2015

closet_queens_3317169fRosie talks over to the phone to multiple slam winning poet and author Anna Freeman ahead of her performance at our Queer’Say event at Hackney Attic on 21 June at 4pm. We hear about her debut novel The Fair Fight, a historical story set within the world of female pugilists and their patrons in late 18th century Bristol. She tells us how she first discovered the existence of these women through a Horrible Histories book and how her spoken word performing experience has enhanced her skills at reading at literary events.

The Pride Arts Festival runs from 21-28 June and includes theatre, museum tours, film screenings and more. Festival curator Duncan Day talks us through some highlights and looks ahead to the big day on 27 June. He tells us about his personal experience of being involved in a huge team of volunteers.

Arts producer Jeremy Goldstein tells us about ACT UP London, a revitalised chapter of the international movement AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power. A photo call against a backdrop of a new ACT UP banner designed by Ed Hall takes place in Trafalgar Square on Monday 15 June between 6-8pm. Jeremy also gives us his view on the David Hoyle and Bourgeouis and Maurice collaboration Middle of the Road currently on at Soho Theatre and, while he’s a huge fan of Hoyle’s work, he felt that this piece could have been honed more with a director and, despite lots of fun moments, felt at times like a little bit of an ‘in joke’.

Stewart Who reviews Closet Queens by Michael Bloch, who recently penned the celebrated biography of the scandalised Jeremy Thorpe. For this compendium, Bloch combed the past 130 years to find the men of British politics who’ve lead double lives due to their sexuality – and a few who threw caution to the wind. Bloch’s sweeping account of the corridors of power mixes gossip, fact and analysis of the UK’s cultural evolution to show us how far we’ve come. He also suggests that due to the intrigue, craftiness and theatre required of politicians, gay men may be naturally drawn to the field. Stewart found the more tenuous claims of ‘platonic’ homosexuality unconvincing and didn’t enjoy this as much as Bloch’s Jeremy Thorpe biography which he found excellent.

OISL 9 June 2015 by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

For rights reasons the music is not on the podcast, but here’s what we played on the live show:

1) Rae Spoon: dangerdangerdanger from the album Love Is a Hunter

2) Paula Varjack: Dear Straight Girl from the EP Always Back Somewhere

3) Bourgeois & Maurice: Goodbye Europe from the album The Third

4) Queen: Killer Queen from the album Greatest Hits

5) Clare Teal: The Way Young Lovers Do from the album At Your Request

Listen again: 2 June 2015

6 06 2015

moominsIt’s not like we need much excuse to talk about the Moomins and their creator, the Finnish writer and illustrator Tove Jansson. Currently out on general release,  Moomins on the Riviera is a feature length adaptation of her cartoon strips. Wendy Baverstock joins Rosie in the studio to talk about the latest adventures of Snorkmaiden, Moomin and the entire family. They both enjoyed this very faithful adaptation which even references some of eccentric author’s own peculiar habits such as hiding dirty washing up under the bed.

DJ and writer Stewart Who reviews McQueen, written by James Phillips (The Rubenstein Kiss) and on at the St James Theatre until 27 June. This new play takes inspiration from the late fashion designer’s astounding runway shows and charts a fantastical night in London. It follows a girl who burgles McQueen’s home to steal a dress and is caught red handed by the designer himself. But instead of phoning the police, he gives her a chance and the two troubled souls go out into the city streets together. Stewart, who knew the designer personally, found Stephen Wight’s central performance spookily accurate yet didn’t find the play completely satisfying.

Psychotherapist, writer, producer, film maker and performer Dr Charlotte Cooper and social worker and musician Kay Hyatt tell us about performing in SWAGGA, ‘a dance crafted out of everyday bullshit, strong wills and trembling flesh’, running at the Yard Theatre from 16-20 June and created by Project O. Both are involved in Fat Activism and perform as the Queercore band Homosexual Death Drive. They talk about facing the challenge of their first professional performance and intensive rehearsal period. We hear tracks from feminist all girl band Trashkit whose music features in SWAGGA.

OISL 2 June 2015 by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

For rights reasons the music is not on the podcast, but here’s what we played on the live show:

1) Annabelle Chvostek: This Night from the album Be the Media

2) Clare Teal: I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight from the album At Your Request

3) Neneh Cherry: Spit Three Times from the album Blank Project

4) Trash Kit: Tattoo from the album Trash Kit

5) Trash Kit: Cadets from the album Trash Kit

6) Dusty Springfield: I Only Wanna Be With You from the album Stay Awhile 

Listen again: 26 May 2015

28 05 2015
Clouds of Sils MariaRosie talks to film critic, screenwriter and blogger Martha Margetson who reviews Clouds of Sils Maria by Olivier Assayas for us. The film stars Juliette Binoche as a stage actor at the peak of her international career and Kristen Stewart as her enigmatic assistant. Martha and Rosie discuss the performances, the beautiful backdrop of mountains and cloud formations and the parallel meanings and levels of the drama – is life imitating art or the other way round? Our next guest, Qazi Rahman, also saw and loved the film.Qazi Rahman takes time out of his busy schedule at King’s College London to join us in the studio. He has published over 50 highly cited scientific articles on the biological basis of sexual orientation, gender nonconformity, and LGBT mental health and was co-author of the 2005 popular science book Born Gay. He is currently working on new research to address the crisis in mental health among LGBT people (who suffer twice the rates of poor mental health and suicide risk compared to heterosexual people). They discuss Qazi’s involvement in last year’s occasionally rather heated Guardian panel debate Born That Way: Is There a Gay Gene and Should It Matter? with Julie Bindel, Patrick Strudwick and Stella Duffy. Interestingly, he also ponders whether our adoption of more heteronormative structures actively discourages diversity within our own community.

Crouch, Touch, Pause, Engage by Robin Soans looks at the life of Welsh international rugby player Gareth Thomas, and the impact that coming out had on his family, career, and his hometown, Bridgend. Co-produced by Out of Joint, National Theatre Wales and the Arcola Theatre, it combines verbatim accounts from Gareth Thomas himself and residents of the South Wales town. The play touches down at the Arcola Theatre until 20 June and James Waygood aka Grumpy Gay Critic gives us his thoughts. Being a Welsh gay rugby fan himself, James absolutely loves it and awards five stars however thinks that it would appeal to anyone, rugby fan or not. He also tells us about his forthcoming charity bike ride.

26 May 15 by Outinsouthlondon on Mixcloud

For rights reasons the music is not on the podcast, but here’s what we played on the live show:

1) Le Fil: The Future is Now from the EP Pop Sculpture

2) SOAK: Blud from the album Before We Forgot How to Dream

3) The Irrepressibles: Ship from the album Nude (Landscape)

4) Alice DiMicele: Ripple from the album Swim


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