Beneath the Surface: Real Life Stories

As part of LGBT History Month, The Royal Central School of Speech & Drama in a unique collaboration with the self development project, The Quest for Gay Men, presented a special one-off showing of the groundbreaking and compelling performance storytelling event – Beneath the Surface: Real Life Stories.

The performance brought together a diverse group of nine gay men as they reflect on their lives, with a raw unflinching honesty to describe their individual and collective fight to come to terms with growing up different in a heterosexual world. Inspired by the book ‘The Velvet Rage’ by Alan Downs, this performance continues to evolve, as do the lives of the storytellers.

The performance piece premiered to great critical acclaim in November, and this night lived up to expectations. The performance was authentic, unwavering and searing in its’ insight into the underbelly of the gay experience. As each character opened the gates into his world, it was striking how much childhood experiences, whether negative or positive can go on to shape a character’s behaviour way into adulthood. The evening was uplifting, informative, witty and engaging. This is an important performance that should be seen by the wider public as a way of gaining insight into the gay man’s world – which can often seem shiny on the outside, but can sometimes mask darker undertones.

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