Glace Chase is an Australian performer, writer and self-described ‘trans-queen’ based in New York City. Known for their outrageous drag performances and alternative city tours, they’re also a two time winner of the Griffin Award.
With exuberant encouragement from STC’s Associate Director Paige Rattray and the support of our Rough Draft program, Chase has produced Triple X — a show they sum up as “descended from a rom com” and “funny as hell”.
Here, Chase reflects on how Triple X came together and why they decided to write a love story between a ‘Wall Street banker bro’ and a charismatic trans drag performer.
Bisexuals. Pansexuals. Experimenters. Chill open minded straight guys. Chill open minded gay guys. And guys exclusively into trans women. There is a middle ground in sexuality (and gender) that NO-ONE has examined. There’s a whole world out there that has never been discussed, and certainly not from a place of empathy. If you’re a straight guy who is in to or open to trans women then society at large, and even the trans community itself, mostly regard you as a fetishist, adulterer, or kinkster. (And some are). If you’re even seen at all. Or that ‘you must be gay’. It’s pretty damning. And it’s cruel to trans folks. Are trans people worthy of love? Of being seen as legitimate romantic partners and desirable in their own right? Do the guys that are into trans women deserve to be shamed or otherised?
It’s not up to me to answer these questions or decide if this story is important, you can decide, but it is interesting and unique. And I’m speaking to the specific experience of cis men/transfeminine folks. I’ll leave it to others more qualified to tell the queer or trans-masculine experience.
The Rough Draft process was exhilarating. And exhausting. I landed from New York City on the Sunday, was in the rehearsal room on the Monday, and in five days cut 100 pages and did a complete rewrite averaging about three hours sleep a night (thank you jetlag — you gave me five extra hours writing time each night). And the reading itself — I’ll never forget it — the response was electric — I’ve never experienced anything like it. After the reading I was delirious and couldn’t even look people in the eye. I love me an intense experience.
This intense focus of a group of people coming together and working on a play can kick it to the next level and beyond. You can achieve more in a week than you would in a year writing solo. The play starts to live and present itself on its own terms. You can see what it is. You can’t write a great play without a great workshop. What do I love about theatre? The Drama! What’s the quote: Theatre is like life with the boring bits cut out.
If only life were as cathartic as a three act structure...
Theatre can and should speak to big ideas. And when it’s done right it can be a profound collective experience.
But for me it’s all about the Epic Drama.
Triple X, 30 Apr – 23 May, The Playhouse, Sydney Opera House.