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Before It Starts is back on tour – April to May 2018

Before It Starts
Before It Starts

Urban, funny and controversial; Naked Frank Theatre’s latest anti-homophobia production, Before It Starts is a brutal and unforgiving take on teenage life, sex, social media and friendships. With this show, there is ‘no compromise with audience comfort zones’. Put simply, if you are squeamish about staring the hard truth of teenage homophobia in the eye and laughing lavishly in its face, then this isn’t the show for you. Written and performed by a predominantly gay cast, this piece is brazen, witty and unapologetic. Teenagers can be cruel and ruthless and Naked Frank Theatre have bravely gone where others have never dared to go before.

Growing up is hard and when a new girl starts school and reveals her controversial sexuality her friends have a lot to laugh about. But when the jokes turn sour and the playful banter becomes bullying the group realise they have a lot to be sorry for.

Based on true events and real-life stories; Naked Frank Theatre combine written accounts and verbatim text to tell a cold story about homophobia in schools in an outlandish, controversial and hilarious manner. The playfully eclectic mix of comedy, physical performance and urban characters puts loyalty, relationships and teenage sex to the test; holding the mirror up on homophobia in a brutal and unforgiving manner. Unlike other conventional homophobia stories that pity the victim, Before It Starts approaches this story from the bully’s point of view, making them likeable, funny, charismatic and oblivious of their own actions.

So sit back, relax and get ready for the rawest, funniest and most offensive ride of your life. It’s playful, it’s honest, it’s daring, it’s an education for all! Oh, and remember, it’s based on true events and real-life accounts. Yes, people actually said these things. Teenagers can be shockingly funny!

Whatever your sexual orientation, this is a show for everyone. We know you’ll be shocked, but that’s kind-of the point!

Produced by: Naked Frank Theatre (A physical theatre company that specialise in the production and performance of outreach work.)
Devised by: The Cast; Carleigh-Ann Portelli, Rebecca Briley and Claire Louise Portelli.
Written by: Carleigh-Ann Portelli
Information: This is a 15+ show due to the offensive content, use of swearing/expletives and sexual references.

Before It StartsOriginally written as a gritty verbatim play to suit a London audience, Before it Starts was first shown as part of the Camden Fringe Festival in 2016, with a successful four day run at the Camden People’s Theatre, which received a ★★★★★ review: “Everything is in place: enthusiasm, integrity, uncompromising message: the result is a highly effective piece of theatre.Peter Yates, London Theatre1

The show then was invited to be included in Beartuza Theatre Company’s Winter Theatre Festival, Walthamstow, held inside the newly opened Maud Theatre, Mirth, Marvel & Maud for one night.

That was a very powerful, insightful performance about this contentious issue; passionate without being preachy, well-intentioned without being woolly-minded, and sincere without being simplistic.” – Paul Whitlock, Independent Reviewer

The theatricality of the piece was remarkable: recorded voice-overs, cuts to Facebook groups, reported tweets, brief re-enacting of political speeches and movement sequences were technically a lovely way of linking the piece together and also brilliant storytelling.” – Anna Landi, Independent Reviewer

Since then Naked Frank Theatre have gone back to the drawing board, exploring the themes in more depth with an immersive R&D process and investing in a complex process of re-writing, re-structuring and re-staging to attack the piece from more political points of view.

The show will be touring to three London Venues between April – May. The Bread & Roses Theatre 24th-28th April, The Etcetera Theatre 30th April and The Blue Elephant Theatre 8th-10th May. Naked Frank Theatre are also looking to extend the tour to theatres in Essex, in particular, Southend-On-Sea, which was the birthplace of the initial idea that seeded the concept for the show way back in 2010 and Brighton, in particular, the Brighton Fringe Festival; which is as the company says: “the perfect way to end the tour, with an LGBT show in the UK’s LGBT capital”.


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