Memento, homo, quod pulvis es, et in pulverem reverteris.
Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.
Welcome to the world of Tim Luscombe’s PIG. It is with great pleasure that we offer you the world premiere of this play from the UK.
PIG first arrived on my desk about four years ago. Intrigued by the title, I immediately read it. Initially, I was left shaken by the play’s presentation of gay male sexuality. These days, our culture seeks to normalize gay sex. It seeks to embed it within the framework of romantic love. It pathologizes sexual behaviours that lie outside the realm of socially acceptable practices. Luscombe, however, takes some of the darker aspects of gay male sexuality and, instead of labelling them as harmful or deviant, treats them as expressions of love. He exposes a contemporary gay psyche that is conflicted between the desire to get-married-and-lead-a-normal-life and the impulse to hold on to the pleasure and freedom that comes with being a sexual outlaw. He creates a space for our most shameful and violent thoughts to be manifested at a time when gay men are only supposed to be proud, healthy and normal.
But what I found remarkable about PIG was not just its treatment of sex. What unsettled me the most was its unusual structure: its continuously shifting tone and style, its rebellion against standard dramatic rules. Luscombe is a trickster – he enjoys continually subverting our expectations of what we are about to see. The play puts us inside a labyrinth. It leads us down a dizzying path where we can no longer tell what is supposed to be real and what is supposed to be fiction. And, at the end of this psychedelic maze of sex, lust, jealousy, and addiction, we find ourselves inside a room where we meet our ultimate lover and experience our deepest fantasy. As we had hoped, this lover is our liberator and this experience is our perfect moment. But, as we had also suspected, this encounter is absolutely terrifying.
This play has haunted me since I first read it and I am thrilled to share it with you. I hope that you will find the experience of watching PIG as moving and as thought-provoking as I have.
Thank you for joining us!
-Brendan Healy, Artistic Director