Article Title:Theatre spotlight: Queen
Author or Credit:Jacqui Stanford
Published on:5th April 2013 - 07:45 pm
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Story ID:13134
Text:Sick of being asked those some stupid questions about being gay over and over and over? Then you're bound to relate to a play about being young and gay, soon hitting the stage in Auckland. Actor Cole Jenkins tells us a bit about "Queen". Coming to The Basement in Auckland in the middle of this month, Queen is basically a series of different monologues from the points of views of different gay guys, ranging from funny anecdotes to poems - and not-so-nice experiences. "It's a mix and match of lots of different stories," actor Cole Jenkins, 22, says. "Most of which are pretty funny, it's a comedy show, and some are the sort of things that people ask gay people all the time." It was written by young Auckland playwright Sam Brooks, who in just his baby-20s has already turned heads. His double-bill at The Basement last year included Mab's Room, which was an examination of gay identity and just how to be in a relationship as a gay man in society. Actor Cole Jenkins Jenkins has seen a few of Brooks' works before and likes his writing, which he says is layered very deep beyond the surface dialogue, so when the writer asked him to be involved in one of his shows he was happy to join the cast. In Queen, the actors play multiple people, and there is no overall narrative, but many tales. Jenkins says the stories bring up lots of issues that gay people still deal with "that they shouldn't really have to deal with in this day and age". He says the play helps rid some of that frustration, and has also challenged him. "Even with all the experiences I've had, I can still be given a reality check sometimes, when you hear a story that makes you go 'wow, that really sucks'." But he's also had plenty of 'wow that's really funny, I wish that happened to me' moments. Jenkins graduated from Unitec at the end of last year and has managed to pick up parts in a diverse range of works. "I'm really lucky to be keeping myself busy after uni. Not everyone can do that," he says, adding there are a lot of opportunities for people to get their own work up and running, which is key, "because there isn't always going to be a gig for everyone". "There are so many actors in Auckland and everybody wants to work. But sometimes it's best to just get a group of friends together and be like 'let's put on a show'. That's what a lot of my friends do and what we're doing later in the year." When it comes to the upcoming production of Queen, he hopes people can walk away from it with a clear insight into a gay man's mind: "And not feel like they've been spoken at the entire time. Not feel like they've sat down in a classroom and had a lecture. It would be great if they came away with new information but in a really exciting, new and positive way." Queen runs at The Basement from 16 - 25 April at 7PM. Tickets are $10-$15 (booking fees may apply). Jacqui Stanford - 5th April 2013    
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