PREVIEW: Crystalz Tavern @Marlborough Theatre

May 25, 2019

There’s a Queer Speakeasy Coming to Brighton Fringe…..Shh – Mum’s the word!

HIDDEN away in the very depths of Kemptown, lies a place of freedom, a place of liberation, a place of fabulously sparkling glitter-clad wonder. And for one week only, you can see it for yourself.

A throbbing neon lighthouse guiding you to a space of safety, away from the jagged rocks of late stage capitalism. A speakeasy that heals the wounded and holds the oppressor to account. This is Crystalz Tavern.  Featuring a shifting constellation of the UK’s best live art/cabaret performers and guest DJs, the exclusive club-esque night of queer talent and celebration is transforming the night at Brighton Fringe.

Raining in young designer Jack Poole of Poile Art, the Marlborough is shapeshifting into a cabaret party that stops for nothing. Resist man-made monsters like bro-flakes and binaries, with the help of resident performers: Symoné, Ebony Rose Dark, XANA, Lasana Shabazz, and Astrothot.

It’s not just the artists and format of the show that is unique to the Fringe landscape. Five of the Crystalz Tavern artists are taking part in week long creative residencies, living, developing and then performing on show nights.

This rare opportunity gives queer black and brown artists to live and work amongst peers in a radically supportive environment.

Symoné makes her debut at The Marlborough Theatre this May. The roller-skating, hula-hooping phenomenon cut her teeth as an underground club dancer in high end shows, and combines dance styles such as voguing and dancehall in her feel good circus routines. Symoné will be working on the creation of her new show Cult Mentality whilst in residence at Crystalz Tavern.

Ebony Rose Dark is your all singing/lip syncing all dancing, Story Telling, V.I.P/Visually Impaired cabaret artist. A feisty Birmingham Lass who is  “challenging the seeing eye” through cabaret. Taking to the stage in drag, Ebony Rose Dark’s performances explore disability within the LGBT+ communities.

XANA – a maverick musician, modular synthesist, poet and sound designer who will be working on their upcoming  show Swallowing Your Idols a series of episodes about returning to your childhood and how connecting with your younger self gives you the forgiveness you seek in your adulthood. The show explores accountability of childhood trauma and the coping mechanisms we develop in order to live in rage and love.

Lasana Shabazz is a multidisciplinary performance artist who has performed across the UK and all over the globe. A regular at the ground breaking Cocoa Butter Club, and frequent host of Batty Mama, we warn you now to be prepared for loud, colourful and conversation starting performances that will always leave you wanting more.

Astrothot is an Interdisciplinary Live artist and Producer from Birmingham whose artistic practice spans theatre, performance, dance, installation and AV.  Their work is autobiographical and socially conscious, rooted in their lived experience as working class, neurodivergent working class and queer human. They make work as resistance and for survival.

The show is an Afro-Futuristic speakeasy with a crystalline cavern meets old-world tavern vibe featuring a cornucopia of cabaret, performance art, video installations,  DJs, Drag and of course crystal themed cocktails.

Crystalz Tavern creates space for the multiplicities that inhabit it, a simultaneously chilled and vibrant space that centres the voices of QTIPOC (Queer/Trans/Intersex People of Colour).

Crystalz Tavern is conceived, curated and compeered by co-director of The Marlborough Theatre, Tarik Elmoutawakil, who has been making waves in Brighton Festival 2018 with his afro futuristic, space-church themed performance party Brownton Abbey (touring 2019).

Event: Crystalz Tavern by Brownton Abbey

Where: Marlborough Theatre, Princess Street, Brighton

When: May 25, 26, 30, 31,

Time: 7.30pm-9pm with Crystal Disco lasting until 11pm.

Cost: £5-£10

To book tickets online, click here: