The theatre is a place where performers become anyone they want to be. But My Son’s A Queer shows the most moving pieces of theatre take place the person on stage is exactly themselves.
In this utterly joyful one-person show, Rob Madge brings their audience into the not-so-secret dreamworld of their younger self as they put on a Disney-esque parade for the family.
My Son’s A Queer is an autobiographical musical of Rob’s life. It’s a glorious homage to the love of those around them, who have coddled their talent and pulled them up when others tried to drag them down.
Told in song, spoken word and via projected video tapes from Madge’s childhood, My Son’s A Queer tackles the heavy subject of a struggle with their identity in a delightfully accessible way.
The perfectly crafted hour has a score to match the pep of Madge and a well appointed set keeps the piece dynamic and flowing.
My Son’s A Queer is a massive two fingers to the nay-sayers – to those who thought the little ball of energy should throw away the dreams of performing to adoring audiences for a ‘real job’.
And it’s immensely satisfying to see the short-tempered five year old who put on little plays in their living room on the side-splitting home videos live out their dream.
Madge doesn’t spend too much energy on the low points but they linger long in the mind of his audience. And they don’t have to; their success speaks to how that negativity doesn’t win.
Madge’s talent is extraordinary – their cheeky winks, outrageous innuendo and powerhouse belt is the recipe for a hit show. But it’s their humility in the quiet moments and appreciation for the loved ones who built them up that give this show it’s real warmth.
Madge recently appeared on stage in Edinburgh as part of the ensemble of the mammoth Bedknobs and Broomsticks tour. Stepping into the limelight in this solo show, Madge commands the audience with a fraction of the budget and a slither of the technical wizardry.
This story of struggle and acceptance feels more pertinent now than ever before. Audiences leave with a sense of injustice and a renewed activism.
Put this show on for every school kid. Make every teacher attend as part of their training. Take it to village halls and theatres and arenas.
Put simply, it’s fucking brilliant.