My Son’s A Queer (But What Can You Do?) ★★★★★ Ambassadors Theatre | Until March 18, 2023


This show provides an inspiring and joyful answer to its title question. As Rob Madge's father writes, "we encouraged Rob to do what they wanted to do, and be what they wanted to be...it's pretty simple." So, we are taken into a family that celebrates a wildly imaginative child who puts on shows in the living room, and we get to share their experience through home videos and this small gem of a production. There are so many examples of the darker side of the queer experience that it is more than a relief to see an alternative reality. This tribute to Madge's family reaches beyond the LGBTQ+ community, however. It should strike a note of hope in anyone who doesn't conform to a stereotype of "normal." Director Luke Sheppard has created a show that is tightly organised and thoroughly professional. The interweaving of the tapes and live action is seamless, and George Reeve's video and projection design is first rate. Kudos also to Ryan Dawson Laight for his imaginative set and costume design, and to Pippa Cleary for her emotive songs and clever lyrics. In the end, however, this show belongs to Madge whose charming performance is never cloying, and whose sense of irony undercuts the narcissism that often beclouds many writer/performer shows. There's lots of humour here as well as heart, and Madge has the audience with them from the moment they step on stage. For an experience as positive and unforgettable as some of the star's favourite Disney films, look no further than My Son’s A Queer (But What Can You Do?).

Rated: ★★★★★

Reviewed by J.C.
Photo by Mark Senior.

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