Photo Caption: Peter Griggs is Paco the Pink Pounder in his one-man show Killer Queen. Photo Credit: Jose Guzman-Colon.
KILLER QUEEN: THE STORY OF PACO THE PINK POUNDER
Peter Griggs performs the life of a gay boxer. Told with live musical accompaniment of songs by Queen
Directed by Wolfgang Lancelot Wachalovsky
Choreographed by Cason MacBride
San Francisco Production Team
Stage Manager/Dramaturg: Carissa IbertPiano Stephen Mello, Lighting Design: Darl Andrew Packard, Sound Design: Mike McCann, Outreach Coordinator: Noah Jacob, Marketing/Publicity: John B. Hill, Graphic Design/Online Marketing: Ernesto Sopprani, Costume Designer: J Miko Thomas, Special Appearance by: Mike Onello
Los Angeles Production Team
Niccolo Menichini (Guitar), Rachel Williams (Piano),
Brian Patrick (Production Manager), Cameron Mock (Lighting Design)
APRIL 28 – MAY 8, 2011
Michael the Boxer Gym and Barbershop, SAN FRANCISCO
MAY 20 – JUNE 5, 2011
Empowerment Center Boxing Gym, WEST HOLLYWOOD
You may break the skin but you can’t kill the soul.
– Jimmy Somerville
SAN FRANCISCO, CA, March 8, 2011 – THEOFFCENTER, a queer performance collective less than a year old, is pleased to present Killer Queen: The Story of Paco the Pink Pounder, starring Peter Griggs as a gay boxer, and told with live musical accompaniment of songs by Queen. This moving one-man show will be staged in two active boxing gyms. It opens April 28, 2011 at Michael the Boxer Gym and Barbershop in San Francisco before heading to the Empowerment Center Boxing Gym in West Hollywood on May 20, 2011 where it will receive its Southern California premiere and Barbershop in San Francisco before heading to the Empowerment Center Boxing Gym in West Hollywood on May 20, 2011 where it will receive its Southern California premiere.
Killer Queen is a coming-of-age story that follows the life of a fictional gay boxer, Paco the Pink Pounder, from his early boyhood conflicts with authority – represented by family, school, and church during the 1970s – through his coming out and later struggles as a minority within a minority group – as a gay person of color – during the 1980s. Throughout this period the British rock band Queen serves as a source of consolation and inspiration to the young Paco, who fashions himself as a kind of Freddie Mercury for the boxing ring.
“Like so many in the gay community Paco looks up to Freddie Mercury because he showed it’s possible to be flamboyant and masculine at the same time,” says Killer Queen Director Wolfgang Lancelot Wachalovsky. “Freddie straddled an interesting divide between the masculine and feminine, but perhaps more to the point he demonstrated that these categories are somewhat arbitrary. At a deep level Killer Queen’s story of a gay boxer is the story of anyone who has struggled to conform to prescribed social categories, whether they’re gay or straight, men or women, black, brown or white, femme or butch or whatever. The play is ultimately about the struggle between individuality and belonging.”
Wachalovsky adds that Paco’s struggle to belong as a gay man of color within the macho world of boxing will take on greater resonance staged not in the “queer space” of the theater but in the “traditionally homophobic space” of a literal boxing ring.
Killer Queen: The Story of Paco the Pink Pounder is written and performed by Peter Griggs with direction from Wolfgang Lancelot Wachalovsky and choreography from Cason MacBride.
About Peter Griggs
Originally from Seattle, this San Francisco transplant has been involved in theater since his early childhood. Recent work includes collaborations with Erika Chong Shuch Performance Project (Muse, Map, Walk); with Boathouse Productions (Lost and Found in the Mission, which won best ensemble at 2008 SF Fringe festival); with Dwayne Calizo at Mama Calizo’s Voice Factory (The Hazardous Waste Project: Sewing The Seeds of Love, Life, Lust, Lost and the Bomb); and most recently with EmSpace Dance (A Hand in Desire, a dance-theater remix of Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire). He is founder of the Burning Monk Collective which has produced two of his original works: Subrosa: Subliminal Joy…the EGO outted, a tale about politics, shame, and the gay ego, and Killer Queen which premiered at Mama Calizo’s Voice Factory in early 2010.
About Wolfgang Lancelot Wachalovsky
Wolfgang Lancelot Wachalovsky is a co-director of THEOFFCENTER and works as a freelance director throughout the Bay Area. He self-produces most of his work including projects like Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s Bremen Freedom, No Exit, and Bacchae v3.0,a version of Euripides’ tragedy. He has also adapted and directed Wolfgang Borchert’s Draussen vor der Tür and directed an adaptation of Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus. Bay Area credits include Noah Haidle’s Mr Marmalade (Renegade Theatre Experiment ), Rent Boy Ave: a musical (Boxcar Theatre), and Killer Queen. Recently, his work was seen in a year-long collaboration with EmSpace Dance in A Hand in Desire. Wachalovsky has also worked as an assistant director in many of the main houses including American Conservatory Theatre, San Jose Repertory Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, and TheatreWorks.
THEOFFCENTER is a San Francisco-based artist-run collective which supports queer performance, especially the work of new and emerging queer performers and theater-makers. It offers artists residencies and programming that build skills while fostering collaboration and community. Founders include Julie Phelps, Program Manager at CounterPulse; Wolfgang Wachalovsky, Artistic Director of Collective Theater Productions; and Ernesto Sopprani, Artistic Co-Director of 1 1 11ArtGroup.
WHERE & WHEN:
Michael the Boxer Gym and Barbershop
96 Lafayette Street @ Howard, 94103
APRIL 28 – MAY 8, 2011
Thursday, April 28, 8pm
Friday, April 29, 8pm
Saturday, April 30, 8pm
Sunday, May 1, 7pm
Thursday, May 5, 8pm
Friday, May 6, 8pm
Saturday, May 7, 8pm
Sunday, May 8, 7pm
UPDATE – SF RUN ended to great reviews.
Work that Talks Back. – Peter created Killer Queen as social commentary about hetero-normative spaces and our community’s relationship to it. “Paco”, an effeminate boxer functions as a catalyst that challenges the status-quo and fights for himself and for us all. This run, being the second staging of the show, received great accolades from local and national media outlets such as The Examiner, SF BAY GUARDIAN, Bay Area Reporter, NY TIMES as well as a number of blogs, tv and radio shows. We are happy and proud to support Peter’s work and vision.
LOS ANGELES, WEST HOLLYWOOD,
Empowerment Center Boxing Gym
8106 Santa Monica Boulevard, 90046
MAY 20 – JUNE 5, 2011
Friday, May 20, 8pm
Saturday, May 21, 8pm
Sunday, May 22, 3pm and 8pm
Friday, May 27, 8pm
Saturday, May 28, 8pm
Sunday, May 29, 3pm and 8pm
Friday, June 3, 8pm
Saturday, June 4, 8pm
Sunday, June 5, 3pm and 8pm
$25 at the door
$50 – donation to the empowerment center $20 to the show/$30 to the Empowerment Center