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The Untold Orchestra presents ACT UP! is a show devised as a collaborative project with The Untold Orchestra, Beau Azra and a cast of incredible Queer talent including; Cheddar Gorgeous, Shameer Rayes & Lavender Rodriguez.  A sold-out show saw attendees enjoy a 40 minute musical ode to Act Up and an artistic delve into Queer Protests past and future, and proved to be a real hit over Manchester Pride Festival weekend. We are currently planning further development of this production.

An excerpt from the script written by Beau Azra and Cheddar Gorgeous:

Some flowers bloom only at night. Others are only allowed to flourish in the dark. Free from the burning glare of the officers flashlight, the probing diagnosis of Victorian psychiatric disorder, and the moral machinations of god’s honest copper. Free from the violence, the fight to walk down the street.

Our histories were forged in and from uncertainty. We learned to tread precarious discursive ground, to claim our moments in the light with care. But through careful feet we learned to dance. Reckless abandon allowed us to dive together into our once and always home...Where we control the light and it doesn’t make us burn, it makes us shine!

Where we move as one in darkened downstairs. Finding ourselves and each other over and over again. Collective catharsis to recharge our batteries enough to dare each other to be our unapologetic selves. While we thrived in our spaces of celebration, we’re celebrated on catwalks, adored on the stage and in musical scores. Above ground, in the harsh light of day, we faced scorn, judgement.

He’s one of them. No daughter of mine. It’s God’s will. Not in my town. Not in my school. Not in my house. Not in my family.

Death was our just desserts.

Metaphorically - those systematically othered have to find a new way to move. And battering metaphysical doors down on a daily basis can make you pretty strong.

Act Up formed as the force for the globally, politically and medically abandoned. A force led by the children of the night. The sequined spectacles. Those who thrive in the spotlight and those of us who cannot escape it. For our foremothers, sisters, brothers and others. Those whose mere existence was an act of defiance. Those who fought the wars, even when the wars won. Those who marched in droves and screamed OUT to Section 28. Brick throwers, Wall smashers and Law changers, Movers, shakers, Medical pioneers and Liberal buccaneers.”

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