Went to see this play by Damian Gorman last night and very quickly realised that I'd never seen a Northern Irish transgendered person represented on stage before (or in a book, or on TV, or anywhere really), let alone a teenage transgendered person. But it wasn't only this which blew me away. What a wonderful and sensitive treatment of some of the issues facing young people in Northern Ireland today; drugs, alcohol, parenthood, suicide. That afternoon I had read a news article reporting that Sir Reg Empey had compared young unemployed people to 'vampires' feeding off society, adding that they live off their parents' money and only want to 'stay at home watching TV with mummy' (so not only are they feckless, but their mothers too, of course). Today I will email Sir Reg and encourage him to see this play.
I LOVED that the play focused on things from a male point of view without vilifying women. The whole thing rang so true; sexism against women affects men too- it teaches them that 'real men' don't talk, don't love, don't take responsibility, don't 'act like a girl'. It is so refreshing to have someone really get this in Northern Ireland. It gave me hope.
Please go and see it if you can. Click here for details.