SPOTLIGHT ON: Stonewall memories, drag queen revenge and tickling

Brian Butler July 2, 2023

Alexis Gregory’s brilliant verbatim solo show Riot Act returns to the West End for a special Pride performance on 5 July at the Crazy Coqs cabaret venue. It was created from interviews Alexis conducted with a Stonewall survivor, a radical drag artist and an AIDS activist. It’s not to be missed – hard-hitting, comic and with a heart of pure gold. Tickets at

Brighton’s own Rainbow Chorus present Hot Harmonies on 8 July at St George’s Church, Kemptown. Expect sizzling rainbow sounds, including Circle Of Life, Chosen Family, Go West and The Rhythm Of Life. Tickets

And while we’re talking Brighton’s Queer choirs, Brighton Gay Men’s Chorus presents OUT! It’s a celebration of the joys of coming out. Follow them down the yellow brick road to a soundtrack of camp classics in this their Gayest show yet. It’s at St. George’s too, 28 and 29 July. Tickets –

Theatre producer and stage lighting maestro Richard Lambert has four Queer-themed shows taking to the London stage next month ahead of a season at Edinburgh Fringe.

Theatre Dame, Harold Thropp is relegated to a dilapidated dressing room, which seems to mirror his emotional state. Reminiscing to us about his traumatic past, he plots an act of retribution on his co-star. Twinkle is a magical one-person drama that appeared some while ago in Brighton, with the lead played by Jason Sutton. Now it’s the turn of Dereck Walker, who is currently playing in Grindr the Opera.

Twinkle runs 13-15 July.

Tickling is innocent fun but when a lot of money can be made online, will lives be ruined or hearts broken? This musical comedy explores the bizarre world of competitive Endurance Tickling. Tickle runs 11-15 July.

Boys In The Buff finds Diana and her boys singing, dancing and telling stories about self-confidence, body image and society’s unreasonably high expectations about our appearance. It runs 18-22 July and on 22 July it allows the audience to mirror the cast and be naked too.

Picking up a young guy or picking up the pieces? Love Is Blue depicts City trader Olly, who has a chance encounter with homelesss teenager Aaron. Why does Olly drink so much and why did Aaron run away?  Does love always have to be blue? The show runs 20-22 July.

All four shows run at the Drayton Arms in Kensington, London. Tickets –

The hot summer season at London’s Kings Head features all sorts of Queer goodies. Gay Witch Sex Cult is a spooky horror comedy about gender reveal parties, demons and of course Gay witches. It runs 11-15 July. Scream Queer Murder is a mystery play with lashings of polari. It runs 1-12 August.

Indefinite Leave To Remain is a cabaret which transports and deconstructs songs from the Pet Shop Boys and deposits them in Weimar Germany. It has an outing on 15 July. 1000 Ways The World Will End (and how it starts again), features star-crossed lovers who are stuck in an endless time loop of death, re-birth and death again. It’s staged from 24 July to 10 August. Kissing A Fool is a clown cabaret tribute to George Michael and it runs 30 and 31 July.

Alexis Gregory, mentioned at the start of this article, returns this time to the Kings Head with a work in progress at the end of July. Future Queer is set in 2069 – and the whole world is, well, Queer. Voguing and lip syncing are Olympic events. Many years earlier, in 1977, Donna Summer had recorded the Queer anthem I Feel Love. Armed with a vintage Donna vinyl, Alexis decides to investigate. It appears for one night only on 28 July. Tickets

The Wind And The Rain was one of the biggest theatrical sensations of the 1930’s – including playing over 1000 performances in London’s West End. Inspired by playwright Merton Hodge’s experience as a medical student, and his arguably Bi-sex love life, it sits in the bohemian society of Noel Coward and Ivor Novello, and Merton’s  own relationship with actor Geoffrey Wardwell. It’s at the Finborough Theatre, London, 11 July to  5 August. Tickets –

Set in 1990’s New York, To Wong Foo tells the story of three drag queens, Vida, Noxeema and Chichi, who embark on a trip across America to attend the Drag Queen of the Year Awards in Hollywood. When their car breaks down in the mid-West, their lives are turned upside down, It’s a world premiere, based on the 1995 cult movie which starred Patrick Swayze. It runs at Manchester’s Hope Mill Theatre from 21 October to 17 December. Look out for casting news in Scene when it’s announced.