A world premiere confronting the constraints of modern masculinity from writer and performer, Christian Graham
Omnibus Theatre 30 August – 09 September
Press night Wednesday 1 September
Riverside Studios 14 September – 26 September
Press night Thursday 16 September
“How do I begin?
I’ll try my best to be clear.
To make sense of things….”
Theatre maker Christian Graham presents Boys Cry for the first time. A play in monologue form, it straddles the line between traditional theatre and spoken word. This one-person tour-de-force performance opens at Clapham’s Omnibus Theatre on 30 August 2021 for two weeks, before starting a further two week run at Riverside Studios on 14 September 2021.
When Mark is mugged on the way to college, his reality is shattered. This life-changing event forces him to confront some of his deepest issues and to begin to interrogate his connection to masculinity. For Mark, being a boy has always meant closing up and shying away from complex emotions. His typically masculine dad is looking for a quick solution, his mum there to be a shoulder to cry on when he is ready to release. As he begins to reassemble himself, he develops a sharper image of the person he wants to be.
Bringing us back to the first decade of the 21st Century – the early 2000s – Boys Cry explores self-image, maturity, life after trauma and definitions of manhood. It fights to overcome toxic aspects of masculinity and interrogate the norms we have come to accept about gender. Boys Cry is contemporary storytelling, opening new dialogues that will stay with you long after you leave the theatre.
Helping to explore these dialogues, there will be a post-show discussion at Omnibus Theatre on Friday 3 September, including director Ebenezer Bamgboye alongside Christian Graham. Christian began acting through Croydon Youth Theatre Organisation and realised quickly theatre making was what he wanted to do. He has worked with The Soho Theatre Writers Labs, Hightide Academy and Orange Tree Theatre Writers Collective. Ebenezer is Carne Deputy Director of Jermyn Street Theatre 2021/22 and resident director of Almeida Theatre.
Christian Graham, writer and performer of Boys Cry, said: “I wrote boys cry to talk about how vulnerability is a strength rather than a weakness but I hope that audiences also walk away with an awareness of how to question some of the false narratives about masculinity we have grown up with. It’s especially important for young men to be able to free themselves from these misconceptions.”
Marie McCarthy, Omnibus Theatre Artistic Director, said: “Developed in Engine Room, our monthly scratch night, Christian Graham’s Boys Cry is a powerful, inspiring and insightful piece exploring the impact of trauma and sits proudly in our Autumn Season.”
Rachel Tackley, Creative Director of Riverside Theatre, said: “I am really looking forward to sharing this intensely personal, moving piece with audiences at Riverside. I am sure it will captivate audiences and inspire debate, which we look forward to being part of.”