As a trans male, Jamie Black has had experience living as both a male and a female, making him uniquely qualified to explore the issue of gender norms. His one-man show, IT’S MY PENIS AND I’LL CRY IF I WANT TO has been performed in festivals around North America, including the New Orleans Fringe Festival, Atlanta Fringe Festival, Sideshow Fringe Festival in Nashville, TN, St. Lou Fringe Festival, and in summer 2017, the Toronto Fringe Festival. Locally, IT’S MY PENIS…. Has been performed at the Filet of Solo Festival, the Rhinoceros Festival and the Abbie Hoffman Died for Our Sins Festival. His first solo show, Living Inside Myself, was produced by Bailiwick Repertory and played to audiences across the country.
In this 45-minute show, to be performed in The Buena, Pride Arts Center, from January 5 through February 11, 2018; Black plays both the male and female members of three different couples: two college students after a date, a husband and wife in serious trouble, and an elderly man facing death and, after that, his widow. It explores a moment in each couple’s life and how each one perceives that moment based upon their acceptance or rejection of gender norms.
Are gender norms necessary in a society where the lines between male and female are increasingly blurred? Some would say “Absolutely!”
IT’S MY PENIS AND I’LL CRY IF I WANT TO takes a sometimes humorous, sometimes poignant, but always thought-provoking look at gender roles. From birth we are indoctrinated with ideas about what it means to be a man or woman and before you know it, we’ve bought into it.
Reviewing the show at the Toronto Fringe Festival, Lisa McKeown of MY ENTERTAINMENT WORLD said, “Black’s natural charm and talent shine through and he so easily connects with the audience that I found myself in tears by the end of the show.” Ilana Lucas of MOONEY ON THEATRE said, “it’s a sweet, earnest show about gender roles, far more Lesley Gore than Lady Gaga in tone… Black’s is a good voice to hear, with a strong message to listen to.”
Jamie Black has been an actor in Chicago for over 19 years. He has performed with many theatre companies including Factory Theatre, Noble Fool Theatre and National Theatre for Children. His first solo show was produced by Bailiwick Repertory and played to audiences across the country. Jamie premiered his current solo show IT’S MY PENIS AND I’LL CRY IF I WANT TO at MPAACT’s Solo Jams Spring series. He won National Artist of the Year at the 2016 St. Lou Fringe Festival. He made his International debut at the 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival and received an Independent Artist Grant from the city of City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. Jamie is a founding member of Soul Fools, an African American sketch comedy group. His television credits include The Chelsea Handler Show, Conspiracy: Martin Luther King, Jr. and Boss.
IT’S MY PENIS (AND I’LL CRY IF I WANT TO) will be performed Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm and Sundays at 5 pm in The Buena, Pride Arts Center at 4147 N. Broadway. Tickets are priced at $25 ($15 preview Friday, January 5) and will be available soon at www.pridefilmsandplays.com or 1 800 737 0984.
IT’S MY PENIS (AND I’LL CRY IF I WANT TO)
Written and Performed by Jamie Black
January 5 – February 11, 2018
Press Opening Saturday, January 6, 2018 – 7:30 pm
Performance schedule Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm, Sundays at 5 pm
The Buena, Pride Arts Center
4147 N. Broadway, Chicago
Tickets $25 ($15 preview)
Tickets available soon at www.pridefilmsandplays.com or 800-737-0984
Are gender norms necessary in a society where the lines between male and female are increasingly blurred? Some would say “Absolutely!” IT’S MY PENIS AND I’LL CRY IF I WANT TO takes a sometimes humorous, sometimes poignant, but always thought-provoking look at gender roles. From birth we are indoctrinated with ideas about what it means to be a man or woman and before you know it, we’ve bought into it. This show explores a moment in three couples’ lives and how each one perceives that moment based upon their acceptance or rejection of gender norms.
ABOUT PRIDE FILMS AND PLAYS
Pride Films and Plays changes lives through the generation of diverse new work (or work that is new to Chicago) with LGBTQ+ characters or themes that is essential viewing for all audiences. We accomplish this mission through fully-staged productions, writing contests and staged readings, film screenings, and special events. We foster long term relationships with artists to create programming that is as diverse, unique, and complex as the community we represent. In 2015, Huffington Post called PFP “A powerful and empowering entity.” The company acquired its two performance spaces at 4139 and 4147 N. Broadway in July 2016, renaming the spaces the Pride Arts Center.
Pride Films and Plays is supported by The MacArthur Fund for Arts & Culture at The Richard Driehaus Foundation, The Illinois Arts Council, City of Chicago’s City Arts Fund, the Elliott Fredland Charitable Trust, Proud to Run, the AmazonSmile Foundation, Arts and Business Foundation, Tap Root Foundation and Alphawood Foundation.
PFP is a member of the Smart Growth Program of the Chicago Community Trust. Pride Films and Plays is a member of the LGBT Chamber of Commerce of Illinois and The League of Chicago Theatres.
ABOUT PRIDE ARTS CENTER
Pride Arts Center (PAC), operated by Pride Films and Plays, opened in 2016 and consists of two performance spaces: The Buena at 4147 N. Broadway which has 50 seats and The Broadway at 4139 N. Broadway which has 85 seats. PAC has become an important part of the arts environment in the Buena Park neighborhood and beyond by hosting events including After Orlando, Bechdel Fest, SheFest and the 525,600 Minutes Cabaret. Additional tenants in 2017 include Walkabout Theater, New American Folk Theater, Cor Productions, Underscore Music Theater, 20% Productions, About Face Youth Theater, Another Door Productions, and of course Pride Films and Plays.
For more information about space at Pride Arts Center, visit www.prideartscenter.com, or www.pridefilmsandplays.com.