Passion Project - a Drag Self-Love Story

by The Studio Theatre in Moffat, Dumfries and Galloway, United Kingdom

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Help us develop a performance with drag queen Devine Tension! You'll support a young artist and build the profile of Scottish rural drag.

by The Studio Theatre in Moffat, Dumfries and Galloway, United Kingdom

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Hello - great to meet you!

We're Jane and Cat from the Studio Theatre in Moffat. We believe every single one of us is a creative genius once we give ourselves permission to take risks and experiment. We've not been proved wrong yet! Our work helps people grow in creativity and confidence.

We've teamed up with Devine Tension, a local and luscious drag queen who's newly returned from London to her native Dumfries and Galloway. Devine is the alter ego of Dillon Colthart - a fierce, fearless, and fabulously imposing presence on the local drag scene. Dillon started his career in drag 5 years ago and is now developing the genre as a rural drag goddess.

We've worked together before - Devine performed an early show - Intervention - to a packed audience at the Studio Theatre just before the first lockdown (remember those days?).

Now, we want to create something special together, and in the spirit of experimentation, we've commissioned Devine to create a new performance piece to be staged in Summer 2023. Welcome to Passion Project!   

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More about Passion Project...

Passion Project is a one-person show, produced by the Studio Theatre and developed and performed by Devine. 

Blending contemporary theatre and drag, this interactive, promenade performance takes a high-energy, raunchy, and raw look at love, sex, and attachment. Honest and vulnerable, it shines a light on our universal human desire for love, acceptance, and belonging.

Part autobiography, the play shows Devine trying to navigate the world in the same way most queer young people and adults do. The script also explores other LGBTQ+ issues, feelings of isolation, and discrimination. These are very real challenges for LGBTQ+ people living in rural areas - especially for young LGBTQ+ people. Without the anonymity of urban living, it takes boldness and courage to be visible as your authentic self.

These are themes Dillon has been wanting to explore for ages and we're thrilled to be the organisation supporting him to get his work to the stage.

Both Dillon and the Studio Theatre feel strongly about the need for compassion, acceptance and being safe to express who you are. By bringing these issues into the spotlight, we want to help create that safe space everywhere and for everyone. 

The first performances will be in Moffat and Dumfries. To be clear - the show will be suitable for adults only, though most of our rewards are suitable for under 18s too.

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We need your help to make Passion Project happen

We're excited to get Devine Tension back on stage, bringing her bold and brave look at the world to audiences in Dumfries and Galloway. But like all small theatres and most organisations in rural areas, Covid and the cost-of-living crisis have severely stretched our financial resilience, so to make this happen, we could really use your help.

Between Jane, Cat, and Dillon, we've got loads of great ideas and the energy for hard work - but that only takes us so far.

So, any donation you make - no matter how small - helps us bring Passion Project to life.

And there's more! We're excited to be one of a small number of projects selected by Crowdfunder and Creative Scotland for their Crowdmatch project - meaning that any donation you make up to  250 is matched by Creative Scotland - so you can double your money and your impact with no extra effort.           

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What we need the money for

We're fundraising to cover artist and development fees, venue, and tech hire, as well as marketing and asset development costs (such as materials, photographer, and videographer fees).

Your donations will help both the Studio Theatre and Devine Tension build our audience, support base and network.

It will also help the Studio Theatre deliver on our aim of supporting early-stage artists and underrepresented young, rural voices.

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Photo credit: Kirstin McEwan Photography

Drag matters

As we've shared already, there are bigger issues that underpin the theme of Passion Project and the challenges of inclusion and acceptance.

With the increasing popularity of queer performance through such programmes as RuPaul's Drag Race, it's easy to overlook the real challenges for LGBTQ+ people living in rural areas.

Dillon's undergraduate thesis 'Queer and the Rural' explored queerness, rurality, and performance, as well as questioning if queer performance does/can exist within the rural, and what its power is.

As Dillon references in his research:

"The urban landscape was an obligatory rite of passage to ensure validity and future happiness. In the city, you are free and fabulous and comfortably surrounded by the tolerance of like-minded people; you are allowed to assimilate yourself into a world that wants you. In the countryside, you are melancholy, lonely and persecuted by people who refuse to accept you." (White 2017).

This is a common storyline amongst many LGBTQ+ identifying individuals who have grown up within a rural area. The aspiration to escape overpowers an advocation for change; the queer migration storyline portrays the journey from closeted solitary confinement, to moving away to the metropolitan, to living a happier, more freeing lifestyle. This seems, as a utopian concept, the ideal situation for queer identifying individuals. The rural is consistently synonymous with backwardness, isolation and lack of education with regards to queer engagement and community.

It is our shared hope that Passion Project contributes to a greater softening of the barriers to belonging experienced by LGBTQ+ people in Dumfries and Galloway and that it spreads understanding and acceptance in the wider community.

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Photo credit: Emily Major

Check out more of Devine's Work...

After/Hours

"You're too fat to be gay". After/Hours responds to the often times toxic intersection of being fat and gay. Body image within the LGBTQ+ community is something many are afraid to talk about. So, let's be blunt about it. Change the conversation.

 

Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£15 or more

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Friday Roast

Coming along to one of the shows - or know someone who is? Then book one of our Friday Roasts and get Devine to 'read' (aka creatively insult) you or your friend. Devine has a wicked tongue, so this is a great reward if you and your target - sorry, friend - have a great sense of humour!

£3 or more

Our Unending Gratitude

Every little helps and we know money's tight - but Creative Scotland automatically doubles the value of your donation, and we're deeply grateful for your support.

£5 or more

A Shout Out on Social Media

Donate £5 and we'll give you a shout out on Facebook and Instagram the next day.

£8 or more

Passion Project Tickets

£8 secures your ticket to the Passion Project performance of your choice - Moffat on the 9th June or Dumfries on the 16th or 23rd June. Or go to all three! This is the only way to get your hands on a ticket before they go on sale to the general public in late April. And Creative Scotland instantly doubles the value of your donation, so you're helping us without spending a penny more.

£12 or more

Devine's Drag Meditation

Are you ready to relax to Devine's soothing tones as she guides you to find your inner Drag Queen? Just £12 gets you 15 minutes of sheer, unadulterated Tension.

£13 or more

0 of 300 claimed

One Limited Edition Passion Project Postcard

You'll receive one randomly selected Passion Project postcard, designed especially for the show by Catherine Major Arts. Three unique designs are available.

£16 or more

Five Passion Project Digital Stickers

Five custom-designed Passion Project digital stickers for you to scatter liberally around your stories and posts - and a guide on how to use them in case you're not sure.

£20 or more

Passion Project Spotify Playlist

Looking for a little inspiration to help you lip sync the house down? Then order the Passion Project Playlist! You'll get a teaser playlist of the music from the show before the performance and the full playlist as soon as the last show closes.

£28 or more

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Passion Project Postcards Pack & Signed Photo

You'll get one of each of the limited edition postcards (3 designs) AND a signed photo of Devine Tension - a real signature too! None of this printed stuff...

£38 or more

Digital Bundle

You'll get the three phone wallpapers, a set of five stickers and our Spotify playlist for the much reduced price of £38 - helping you keep the Passion Project love spreading long after the last curtain call.

£48 or more

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A Passion Project T-Shirt

Featuring a unique design from the show, this is the perfect way to wear your Passion Project Love with PRIDE.

£50 or more

0 of 30 claimed

30-Second Custom Video Message from Devine

Whether you're wishing your Mum a Happy Birthday, proposing to your partner or sending an end of year 'thank you' to your teacher - or anything in between - Devine will record a 30-second custom video message from your script.

£75 or more

0 of 36 claimed

Your Name on a Studio Theatre Seat

Celebrate your or a loved one’s enjoyment of theatre by naming a seat in the Studio Theatre auditorium. Your name will be hand painted on one of our 36 seats and will stay in the theatre in perpetuity.

£100 or more

0 of 3 claimed

Cameo Appearance in a Passion Project Performance

Of course you've always wanted your name in lights! Your donation will buy you a key role in one of the Passion Project performances. Choose from Moffat on 9th June, or Dumfries on the 16th or 23rd June. There's no script to learn, just a chance to be part of the lights, camera, action...

£250 or more

0 of 5 claimed

Venue Hire (Half Day)

Hire the Studio Theatre building for half a day - whether it's for a kid's birthday party, a private celebration or your own event, you'll have access to the whole of the public space and help from the trustees on hand.

£500 or more

0 of 3 claimed

Sponsor the Show

If you're a business looking for sponsorship opportunities - this is the reward for you! Your business will feature in our Passion Project social media posts, your logo will appear on our website for the rest of 2023 and you'll feature on all promotional materials for Passion Project. And, you'll get 4 free tickets to the show of your choice.

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