Hello, I’m Gareth Edward, a writer and performer from South Yorkshire, now based in London. I’ve been performing in cabaret and comedy settings for several years, and this is my first play. It is a dark comedy about the pre-digital world of gay saunas in the late 1990s. I want to take a one hour preview of this show to the Camden Fringe in London, this August.
The play is about Jack Hoosie, manager of South Yorkshire’s third most hygienic gay sauna (1997). The story is delivered as an immersive, theatrical monologue. Jack will try to convince the audience they should become ‘full members’ but the cracks in the sales patter will soon begin to show. The Leisure Groan is struggling, and the impending threat of a new digital sexual revolution emerges from the steam. This will appeal to anyone who is feeling nostalgic about the 1990s, or those who just want to enjoy Jack’s fabulous taste in music!
My production company Suburbaret has received very little income during lockdown, with no government support or loans. We ran one variety show between the lockdowns which lost money, owing to covid restrictions limited capacity at the theatre.
I'm not taking a writer's fee or performer's fee for this production of Jack Hoosie and the Leisure Groan, but I want to ensure all creatives involved in the project are paid ITC agreed rates. I want to raise the additional funds I need to cover this production including:
1. Working with a director - this is particularly important because this is my first performance in a one-man play. Gareth Kennerley loved the script and has agreed to direct it.
2. Set design and build - Isobel Power-Smith has designed an incredible set, evoking a late 1990s northern sauna. I love her immersive designs and she has produced my cabaret costumes for years. Her main job is set design, so she is the perfect choice.
3. Camden Fringe registration, marketing and artwork
4. Props, costume
5. Tech and music production by Jordan Clarke, vocal direction by Jamie Anderson.
6. Script editing and press releases (to encourage reviewers to attend)
The absolute minimum cost to get this show produced and previewed at the Camden Fringe is £2,570. If I can raise £3,119 this will allow additional music production, props and marketing. If the preview gets good reviews, there will hopefully be a full production.
This is a passion project - I love Jack and he's such fun to perform. This grew out of stand-up but has developed into a bigger story that must be told!
Catch jack on TikTok as @jackhoosie
Audience reviews of Gareth and Jack:
"Hilarious & disgusting!"
"Filthy and fabulous"
"We needed an explosion of camp. You delivered!"
There are risks involved in staging this production. Most notably, COVID-19 restrictions might change again. To mitigate this, any funds raised will be used to reschedule the show as soon as possible.
Thank you so much for supporting creatives and live performance, at such a difficult time for all of us.