Resident Alien, Bury

ISABEL COCKAYNE At the age of 90, Englishman Quentin Crisp was living in New York in a bedsit but that did not dampen his acerbic wit or his astute views of life. Resident Alien is a monologue peppered with bathos and pathos.

ISABEL COCKAYNE

At the age of 90, Englishman Quentin Crisp was living in New York in a bedsit but that did not dampen his acerbic wit or his astute views of life. Resident Alien, performed at the Theatre Royal as part of the Bury Festival, is a monologue peppered with bathos and pathos. It is a window into Mr Crisp's later years, when suffering from eczema with an almost paralysed left hand he was battling through the days.

Played by Bette Bourne, this is a funny and touching look at the open rampant homosexual.

Clothing the Naked Civil Servant in tattered but beautiful rags, he holds forth on a vagaries of marriage and relationships as a vain, glorious gay youth in London in 1926. Written and directed by Tim Fountain from material collected from Mr Crisp's diaries and recollections the show has been a huge hit on both sides of the Atlantic. Perhaps what is surprising is that from a man who lived in evident squalor, a monologue so rich in observation of culture and style should come. But this play shows that Mr Crisp could hold this dichotomy with panache. He asks you several times to look into yourself for the answers, not dwell on the past and the future for redemption and you can't help feeling that this is Quentin Crisp's message from the grave.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter