IF the name of the play alone didn’t pique your interest, then perhaps the motto of the Sisters of Gertrude Stein, “no men, no meat, all manners”, might do the trick.

Five Lesbians Eating a Quiche may sound like a name of a new viral video making its way around social media, but the play about a group of women discovering their sexualities contains themes that will resonate with audiences while having them in stitches.

Making its Australian premiere during the upcoming Brisbane MELT Festival, the play is set during the 1950s in the US where fears of the atomic bomb played on the minds of citizens and homosexuality was not discussed openly.

The women are members of the Sisters of Gertrude Stein, a quiche appreciation society where the baked goods become a symbol – and subtle euphemism – for the struggle they face in coming to terms with their sexuality and facing a prejudiced world.

“It’s a timeless story and I think that it represents all prejudices that still exist today and some people’s inability to be open about themselves. And who they are. It’s still very prevalent today,” cabaret performer Catherine Alcorn told the Star Observer.

Alcorn, who plays the role of Louise, said that she was ecstatic to be invited to be a part of the Australian premiere production.

“The play is just a hoot. When [the producers] invited me to be part of the show I jumped at the chance. After years of hearing about it and seeing it on Broadway, I’m so happy to be a part of what I’m telling people is my first ‘straight gay play’,” Alcorn said.

“It’s amazing to be able to bring the play to Australia.”

Sean Bryan, one half of the production team of Imprint Theatricals, said that when he saw the original Chicago production in 2011, he knew it was a story Australia had to see.

“I knew immediately that it was one of the most hilarious things I had ever seen in my life and that I had to bring it home,” he told the Star Observer.

It was the particular style of the original Chicago production that peaked Bryan’s interest.

“I don’t think we have seen a show like it before. It’s very immersive and goes out into the audience to let them experience the show on a deeper and richer level,” Bryan said.

“The writing is very clever but it was the way that the Chicago play was produced in Chicago; it’s a style that is very different to how plays are made in here. It’s a very particular way of story-telling that puts a lot more emphasis on the writing, performing and audience engagement. It could be the next big thing here.”

Alcorn’s character Louise is the leader of the Sisters pack and through that role, she believes that the play will appeal to a wide variety of people.

“It’s like a Country Women’s Association (CWA). I think a lot of people will be to appreciate the part of the story that revolves around women coming together and relate to the cooking and sisterhood theme of the play through their mothers and grandmothers,” she said.

On whether members of the CWA would be welcome to see a play about five lesbians eating baked goods, Alcorn couldn’t see why not.

“I would totally love for the CWA to come to a production. I think they would appreciate it more than they think and at the end, we should organise a bake-off.”


5 Lesbians Eating A Quiche

WHEN: February 3-8
WHERE: Brisbane Powerhouse
COST: $43
BOOKING DETAILS: (07) 3358 8600 or visit brisbanepowerhouse.org

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