Abstract

Abstract:

This article maps the personal journey of queerness and spiritual identity travelled by artist/producer Jonathan Brower through his semi-autobiographic play oblivion, which deals with the struggle to reconcile sexuality and faith after conversion therapy. Tracing the life of the play from its inspiration, development, and touring, Brower unpacks the complex negotiations he and his audiences navigated between the multiple seemingly incommensurate identity categories covered in the play; from the extreme discrimination queer individuals face in conservative Christian communities, to the difference in queer inclusion between Christian denominations, to the invisibility of queer Christians, to the deep rifts that cause hostility inthe queer and theatre communities toward Christianity. Set amidst this volatile societal backdrop, oblivion toured around the country playing site-specifically on the altars of Christian spaces (both affirming and non-affirming). Its second act drew diverse public and congregational audiences into substantial conversation with each other and the creative team about the challenging themes in Act One. Reflecting on his own process of reconciliation toward a new version of faith offered to him through these conversations, Brower examines the success of oblivion'smultiple-act format: a space thatcreates relational possibilities between communities at odds.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1920-941X
Print ISSN
0315-0836
Pages
pp. 78-84
Launched on MUSE
2019-02-09
Open Access
No
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