New Queers on the Block
Welcome to a new fresh programme of exciting and urgent theatre, dance, cabaret and performance art.
New Queers on the Block was conceived by the team at the Marlborough Theatre in Brighton
The Marlborough Theatre is the only theatre in the UK that specialises in supporting LGBTQ+ artists. We want the great artists we support to have the opportunity to tour across the UK to the widest possible audiences. So we decided to create a queer touring theatre network with some fantastic partners across the UK and over the next two years we will be bringing these LGBTQ+ artists to you. Each location on the tour is unique, with different LGBTQ+ communities and we can’t wait to get to know you all better. Some places we are visiting have vibrant LGBTQ+ communities and some places wouldn’t usually have access to new LGBTQ+ led performance. In every instance, we are delighted to get the opportunity to share their work with you, we hope it resonates with you, shows you something different and opens up new conversations.
In developing this project we’ve learnt so much about how the word ‘queer’ is used and understood across the UK and this has given us insights into the different communities we’re working with.
What does queer mean to you? What does queerness mean, outside of the obvious places like London and Manchester? How have the definitions of queerness, and our understanding of intersectionality, changed over the past few decades? Where in the country is ‘queer’ still mainly viewed as a slur and where has it been reclaimed by communities as a word associated with pride and self-identification? Are the definitions of queerness too narrow in the press, in films and on TV – who gets excluded??
It is with these questions in mind that we invited Rachael Young, Stacy Makishi, Hester Chillingworth, Marikiscrycrycry, Ophelia Bitz and Oozing Gloop on tour with us. They are some of our favourite artists we’ve worked with with over the past 10 years and they represent diverse viewpoints on queer experience UK and internationally.
A hugely important aspect of this touring network has been to ensure that we are making a positive impact in the communities that we are travelling to by providing funding and performance opportunities to performers living in those locations. In each place we are touring we are supporting a local LGBTQ+ artist to join this programme and develop their work for future New Queers on The Block tours.
Xavier, David, Ema