Lesbian is a word rife with assumptions, stigma and celebration; all of which Kit Sinclair adeptly addresses in her one-woman-show 30 and Out.
Lesbian is a word rife with assumptions, stigma and celebration; all of which Kit Sinclair adeptly addresses in her one-woman-show 30 and Out. A barrage of millennial lesbianism with Doc Martens and harness included, Kit provides a touching tribute to queerness for straight and gay audience alike. Filled with witty in-jokes and tender moments, for anyone not to grips with the gays this show is a one-stop shop for anything you might need to know.
Sinclair’s performance is endearing and joyous as she takes the audience from satirical 50s housewife with a strong undercurrent of comp-het fruity erotica, to a touching and candid acceptance of queerness, love, and community. The audience is taken to lesbian clubs where love is first truly felt, and bears witness to the fall out and heartbreak that follows. We see sex, joy, and tragedy all through Sinclair’s eyes, with a fully captioned and technically strong show. Interspersed with this individual experience are testimonials from lesbians across the UK, sharing their stories and expanding the web of the show’s community to far-reaching and powerful places.
A mixed-media collage of performance, 30 and Out chucks everything at the wall and most of it sticks. Simulating the loss of lesbian virginity through Nigella Lawson and Jane Fonda soundbites is a particular stand-out, with childlike giggles at the all-too-relatable awkwardness of inexperienced sex felt in the audience. Where this approach misses the mark, though, is in the musical interludes. As Sinclair dons the ukelele (a staple of millennial lesbian-hood), her ‘How to Spot a Lesbian’ songs are witty but misplaced. Despite this, the range of genre in the piece is a real strength, keeping the audience engaged through dance, satire and spoken word.
The treatment of tragedy still has me in two minds. For a queer audience, the reminder of our own treatment in society felt unwelcome, a bitter reminder through an otherwise joyful performance. However, while uncomfortable, perhaps this is the very point. Queerness exists on the ridge between euphoria and tragedy, and specifically for the allies in the audience, the acknowledgement of the collective trauma was essential. In either case, it is dealt with grace and given the respect and care such heavy subject matter deserves.
30 and Out is a beautiful dip into lesbian joy. Taking each stereotype deep into a candour and openness not found in most one-woman shows, the audience truly can walk a mile in someone else’s Doc Martens and be thankful for it.
30 and Out is running at Pleasance Courtyard, Baby Grand, until 28th August. Get your tickets here!