Jamie Fletcher and company presents
“God is not male or female. God is not gay or straight. God is not a culture war”
Dancing Bear is a young man whose heart is trapped between lives, entwined in a faithful devotion to God and an emerging sexuality, he’s growing desperate for clarity and answers. But even though Dancing Bear is trying his best, he’s trudging a dark and lonely road, having spent his life pleasing others and internalising shame. Now he’s looking for relief like his life depends on it. It turns out that it just might.
As a show, Dancing Bear is a dizzying cabaret of contradictions; it’s glamorous and unflinching, hilarious and heartbreaking, deeply personal and talismanic. Fusing storytelling, contemporary dance, personal testimony, drag performance and live music, the ensemble cast deftly flip between catchy pop tunes and dramatic storytelling to create a feast for the heart and head that explores the desperate tightrope of personal integrity, social acceptance and mental health that many LGBTQ+ people may find themselves precariously balancing on.
Conceived by director/musician Jamie Fletcher and writer/musician Beccy Owen, Dancing Bear features a multi-talented cast of ten. At its centre is a question that is relevant to people of all backgrounds and beliefs: ‘how and who should we love?’
Dancing Bear previewed at Contact (Manchester) in February 2016 as part of Queer Contact Festival as well as a sell out performance at West Yorkshire Playhouse (Leeds) as part of LGBT History Month. The show will tour from February 2018 onwards.
Dancing Bear is a BSL interpreted show.
Commissioned by Contact
Supported by West Yorkshire Playhouse, Theatre in the Mill, Yorkshire Dance, Live Art Bistro, LCI (Leeds Church Institute), Chritsian SeedBed Trust, chapelFM and Arts Council England.
The ‘Dancing Bear (Original Cast Recording)’ album is available to download online: www.jamiefletcherandcompany.bandcamp.com
I loved it. I kept waiting for it to define itself and then I realised…ha…it’s not going to…it is just being, in all its diverse, contradictory, glamorous, heartbreaking rawness and glory. It was a feast.
A fantastic mixture of laughter and tears. It deeply moved me.
It was excellent. I like to think of myself as open minded and understanding but it made me understand more fully people who identify as LGBTQ.
The BSL works beautifully. More of this in theatre!
The Dancing Bear Trilogy presentsThe Alphabet Club Anthology Book
Curated by Jamie Fletcher and published in partnership with the Leeds Big Bookend festival The Alphabet Club Anthology Book features a range of thoughts, perspectives and experiences around the themes of gender, sexuality and faith from over thirty contributors including human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, trans activist and artist Fox Fisher, psychotherapist Alex Drummond, baptist minister Revd Simon Hall, muslim drag queen Asifa Lahore, drag king Adam All, writer and storyteller Matthew Bellwood, playwrights Jo Clifford, Emma Adams and Kieran Hurley and many more.
Art as Activism: a compilation of articles, confessions, stories, songs, photographs, poetry, illustrations and artwork from different LGBTQQIAAP people.
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, Allies and Pansexual.
Or as I like to call it… The Alphabet Club.
The Alphabet Club Anthology Book is a unique queer exploration of gender, sexuality and faith.
– Peter Tatchell
The Alphabet Club Anthology book allowed me to have conversations with people who are normally on the other side of the cultural fence - people who I might normally avoid or find it hard to talk to or mistrust
– Jon Clark
Andrew Gardiner – Lead dancer/Performer
Owen Farrow AKA Divina De Campo – Drag Queen/Dancer/Vocalist
Leonie Kate Higgins – Cellist/Vocalist/Performer
Jim Muckelt – Guitarist/Drummer/Performer
Rhiannon Armstrong – Violinist/Performer
Sam Jackson – Double Bass/Bass Guitar/Performer
Ric Neale – Piano/Accordion/Vocalist/Performer
Jamie Fletcher – Guitarist/Drummer/Vocalist/Performer
Beccy Owen – Vocalist/Performer
Katie Fenwick – BSL interpreter/Performer
Concept & Direction by Jamie Fletcher
Text by Beccy Owen
Choreography by Eleni Edipidi
Original Music by Jamie Fletcher, Beccy Owen & Ric Neale
Musical Direction by Ric Neale
Set Designer – Bethany Wells
Lighting Designer – Andrew Crofts
Sound Engineer – Craig Rothery
Stage Manager – Charlie Stanley
Producer – Hannah Tookey
Commissioned by Contact
Supported by West Yorkshire Playhouse, Theatre in the Mill, Yorkshire Dance, Live Art Bistro, LCI (Leeds Church Institute), Christian SeedBed Trust, chapelFM and Arts Council England.
Book the show
If you would like to enquire about the show then please send a message via our contact page.Contact us to book the show