Two Queens is delighted to announce the premiere of a new film work by Hannah Quinlan & Rosie Hastings: Something for the Boys.
‘Something For The Boys’ takes place in Blackpool, a historic seaside resort whose dazzling entertainment culture has been brutalised by austerity and falling visitor numbers. The town provides the conditions for a unique political conflict to play out: between the reactionary nostalgia of the Victorian holiday destination and its vibrant and fantastical gay scene.
‘Something for the Boys’ presents a series of vignettes filmed at two locations in Blackpool’s gay district, the art deco-style Funny Girls cabaret theatre and Growlr club. Utilising the opulence and grandeur of these locations as the backdrop to performances by veteran drag queen Betty Legs Diamond and professional go-go dancer Ted Rogers, the film is interspersed with material from Blackpool’s local history archive.
Through these performances Quinlan and Hastings establish a connection between the hyper-femininity of Drag, which seeks to reveal the mechanisms of constructed gender, and musical theatre’s exaggerated post-war morality, which in turn reveals the latent hierarchies of class, gender and race in Anglo-American culture. In a similar way to the world of mainstream drag, musical theatre often fails to live up to its subversive context, reproducing the classist, misogynist and racist dynamics of the dominant culture within which it operates.
This exhibition is the first in a series of four projects at Two Queens across 2018-19 aimed at providing the opportunity for emerging artists to develop ambitious new projects through a supportive curatorial dialogue. The programme is made possible by public funding from the National Lottery through Arts Council England and De Montfort University.
The exhibition opens on the 30th June and ends on the 1st September