(Credit to SAMANTHA GUESS PHOTOGRAPHY for the photos used above)
Before the show, I was lucky enough to be given an interview with the cast and writer/director of the JockNight play and given an insight to the workings of the play and the event as a whole, which was part of the OUT/STAGE/US art event, which took place on the 7th and 8th of August 2017.
Producer – Adam Zane
Cast -Adam Waddington, Michael Byron, MJ Manning and Sam Blackhurts.
What made you all want to do the show?
Sam – It was just the experience for me. For one, I’ve never worn a jockstrap in my life so it was already something different, and I enjoy acting anyway, it was just completely outside the box.
Michael – Just the fact it was an LGBT piece, it’s raising awareness to a lot of issues that are face within the LGBT community.
Adam – It was after reading the script, I just really liked the characters and the relationships between them. That is what drew me in. I think the LGBT aspect as well, it was another element because I’ve never done anything thats in that style before.
MJ – When I first got the script to do the audition, I just completely fell in love with it. Its very real, not exactly a representation of all gays, but still real. Its the way the characters communicate, the language in it is just very real life.
So I read that it isn’t just a play tonight, it’s multiple forms of presentation?
Adam – JockNight is a part of OUT/STAGE/US which will be a quarterly LGBT+ arts event, so we have gay artwork in the theatre, we have drag queens, we’ve got singers, LGBT writers and case, as well as our straight allies who are supporting us. Not the entire case and creators and LGBT, there are a lot of people who just wanted to get involved. I think its important to remember that there are some guys taking part who are straight as anything, but just wanted to be part of the project. Due to it being a quarterly event, we really want to encourage people to mix. So new LGBT writers, short plays, it could be spoken word, it could be comedy, LGBT standups, anything that would fit the night. We really want to encourage submissions for the next OUT/STAGE/US. (for more information on submitting your work please click here)
How much were any of you involved in the process of it?
Adam – I’m the producer of it, these guys here have given up their time, to workshop the play, I gave the script, I didn’t know if it was going to work, they really brought it to life for me. And now because its going to be a trilogy, I am kind of thinking about where the story will go. In the end all three parts will be put together.
Where are you planning to tour it?
Adam – We want to do a Northwest tour first, so do Liverpool, Leeds, Sheffield etc, because we’ve just taken gypsy queen to the unity, we sold out both nights, so it shows that there os a realy LGBT audience in Liverpool.
How long has it taken for it all to come together?
Adam – I’ve wanted to do an LGBT arts for over a year, so its been kind of in the planning. It was more a thought of bringing together lots of different LGBT artists and creatives, with it being pride season, tonight is about the 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation, and thats why OUT/STAGE/US started, it just felt like the right time.
There are 2 nights, are you all involved in both?
MJ – I wrote my own play back in college, called closets are for clothes, I’ve raised some money for charity which is awesome. Adam gave me the wise advice to submit the play, which got accepted, which will be during Tuesday nights event.
What is the main difference between the 2 nights?
Adam – Tonight is about celebrating the LGBT nightlife, exploring the gay village, and tomorrow night is more about the global response to different LGBT issues, and we are ending tomorrow night with a tribute to Martyn Hett, who died in the Manchester bombings. It will be his friend Rob King who will be closing it, with a song dedicated to him.
What made you choose the Hope Mill Theatre to start with?
Adam – Hope Mill is just really supportive of the project and its a very different night for them, they have never done anything like this before, we sold out pretty much the minute the poster with these guys in their jockstraps came out.