New review: Stag to doe
Megan Stodel // 2 September 2013
Some of life’s events that most clearly insist upon gendered roles and interactions are the stag do and hen party. Traditionally in groups of men, there seems to be a requirement within stag dos to emphasise the masculinity of those partaking – through sex, alcohol, bravado and machismo. Therefore, it is the perfect subject for a play interrogating how we inhabit and perform gender.
Stag Nation shows the morning after a stag do, with the participants waking up and finding – to their surprise and discomfort – that they have changed sex. Malise Rosbech found it an interesting take on the subject:
The whole show is viewed through a pair of Butlerian lenses, enlarging and mocking the performative aspect of gender identities. When self-identified women actors perform stereotypical male identities and vice versa, the result is subversive: re-enacting established gender norms, but also exposing their instability. Stag Nation forces us to question the unstable meanings of ‘being a woman’ and ‘being a man’.
The picture is of a red deer stag. Picture taken in 2009 in Jægersborg Dyrehave in Denmark by Bill Ebbese.