“When the Sex is Gone” is styled “a theatrical portrait of eroticism”. What is fails to add is that it is one of the most confronting, absorbing, original, very funny, very wicked, very clever, very dark, sexual seventy minutes you are ever likely to spend anywhere! Here read “The Spare Room, Garden of Unearthly Delights”.
Tommy Bradson has written this and his performance as a hermaphroditic Drag Queen never misses a beat or an opportunity. This boy is always in control and the audience laughs, hoots, gasps and applauds throughout the performance, including this reviewer who confesses he’s not a fan of ubiquitous drag.
Bradson is supported by an equally talented “Boris”, who has composed the wild but appropriate music score and who accompanies him on a synthesizer, sings in her own right – what a vocal range! – and provides a harmony line for some songs; gentle songs, vicious songs, belted out songs – all with clever lyrics. Never are you in any doubt that you are watching real talent strutting its stuff – and “Up you, Jack!” if you think otherwise!
When Bradson, with the help of a young male from the audience, removes his red and black glitter dress to appear in his drag, corset-based, underwear beneath a fetching kimono, then later in male clothes – jocks, trousers, braces and singlet – to don boxing gloves, we see a handsome young man with all the vulnerability but none of the shyness that you might associate with these transformations.
In the world of Greek mythology, and even in some cultures today, the human hermaphrodite is considered a god, to be cherished, even worshiped. While that may be going too far in describing Tommy Bradson, his is a show that you will remember for some time to come – and maybe wonder why he had you so firmly by the …. er….throat so willingly for so long.
If you are easily shocked (and don’t want condoms thrown to you like feeding time at Sea World), better give this show a miss, but if you want something down and dirty, and thoroughly entertaining, Bradson’s your boy – and girl.
by Richard Flynn, for the Adelaide Theatre Guide
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