Warning: Mature Content, Language
Performed at Gallery #1: B Contemporary Gallery
Review by: Jessica Perkins
Let me just say that The Gallery Mini-Series is fantastic addition to this year’s Hamilton Fringe. The galleries on James Street have opened up their doors to provide an intimate space for a variety of shorter pieces. The Mommiad in particular thrives in the cozy, unassuming gallery setting. This piece is laid-back and honest-but that doesn’t mean it’s by any means boring. Hamilton-based writer, actor and director Sky Gilbert offers us a slice of reality sprinkled with eyeshadow and sequins. As himself, and in the character of his drag persona Jane, he reads highlights from his book of poems about his complex relationship with his late mother. Gilbert races from one line to the next as if in conversation, avoiding over-dramatization. When he does sit in a moment, it is short but immensely touching. This piece was a little sad at times, but a part of this sadness is Gilbert’s triumphant ability to laugh in the face of the taboo. I’m not talking about social taboos of cross-dressing, homosexuality or adultery-although these are explored aswell- I’m talking about the subjects in our lives we are all truly afraid of. Death. Sickness. Losing a loved one. Feeling neglected. Gilbert takes it all in and courageously swallows down the pain with sweet moments of nostalgia and a deep love for the woman who once forced him to watch hamsters mate. He is candid, unafraid and real…and boy, does he have great legs.