Party Scene: Chemsex. Community. Crisis. at Edinburgh Fringe ★★★
A dance theatre exploration of chemsex that needs to inhale deeper.
Four beautiful male-presenting performers light up the stage with intense dance segments, and talents including hula hooping, to explore the male gay world of chem sex i.e. the gay sex and drugs scene. Unfortunately, for such an attempt ion-grabbing subject, the show feels a little too abstract and robotic, with thinly painted characters and more focus on the visual and choreographic elements.
The banging soundtrack does keep the show moving for the most part, but the transitions between scenes are slow and ten minutes could have been shaved off this production to make it tighter.
The show doesn’t really explain the context of chemsex too much, and expects a mixed audience to understand its seedy underbelly from the outset. It all seems a little superficial, which maybe echoes the true world of chemsex.
The performers are at the top of their game physically, and it is like watching a Gymbox commercial with the most talented dancers. If they threw in a few missed stesp or did a non-rehearsed fall or improvised moment, the show might just break into emotional realism rather than a sexy but essentially empty dance show.
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