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‘Drag Fabulist’ Dickie Beau Blackouts in Bristol

Following a series of acclaimed performances, ‘Drag Fabulist’ Dickie Beau brings his first major solo show Blackouts to Bristol as part of Mayfest.

A pioneer of playback performance, emerging from the drag tradition of lip-synching, Dickie Beau is influencing the practice of a whole new generation of performance-makers. Conjuring the spirits of celebrated Hollywood icons in an innovative theatre experience, Dickie will lead audiences on a bewitching adventure as he channels the ghosts of his childhood idols.

Dickie secured exclusive access to audio tapes of Marilyn Monroe’s final interview conducted by journalist Richard Meryman. Published in LIFE magazine just two days before her death, Blackouts includes material never before heard in the public domain. As well as this rare audio footage, segments creatively appropriated from Dickie’s own recordings with Richard Meryman also form part of the story. Blackouts sees Dickie shape-shift through a shadowy soundscape of lost souls in a sensational trip to the subconscious underworld of his future self; bringing to life these audio artefacts.

The show marks a significant development for Dickie’s trademark process of dissecting, then re-membering (literally, putting back together and embodying), found sound. The digital script has been written entirely using this and incorporates much original source material, including the spellbinding Judy Speaks tapes – Judy Garland alone with a Dictaphone, making notes for a memoir never to be written. The resulting piece is a study of icons in exile from society and themselves, and the haunting impressions they’ve left behind.

Blackouts premiered at the Unity Theatre, Liverpool, as part of the Homotopia festival in 2012. It went on to sell-out runs at both Contact Manchester in November 2012 and Chelsea Theatre as part of the SACRED festival in 2013, then had a successful two-week run at Soho Theatre, London.

The tour arrives into Bristol as part of MayFest, on Friday 15 & Saturday 16 May at The Bristol Old Vic.

Full Programme and Booking information can be found on the MayFest website.