CHURCH OF OYSTER

Performer poet Caramelsauce Mel cordially welcomes the audience into a tactile tour of the space, we feel the latex and the drum: a gentle warm-up to a show that is quite a ride. The Church of Oyster experience sits somewhere between live art and drag variety because it doesn’t quite achieve a theatrical thru-line. Yet, for a new show which openly admits that its inspiration (The Satanic Temple of Los Angeles) no longer inspires it, it charges into the light with conviction, beauty and boundless energy.

Marlena Dali is a ringleader of sorts and has a commanding and strong voice. We are educated by a piece about Juggalos – a subculture often dismissed as demonic fan-boys are revealed as revolutionary anti-discrimination activists.

Momento Moreofme is a riot. Their tumbling and fumbling and flaunting is endlessly entertaining, though the political and pop-cultural overtones in their work aren’t always effective.

Yolanda Frost supports the show with their unaffected sensuality and joy for the moment. It’s quite amazing to see someone so deep in an experience; connected, embracing. Their percussion work alongside Caramelsauce Mel is a marvel, and Mel’s poetry is hypnotic, essential and true.

Sarah Houbolt is a revelation. Her work is soft and sweet, sexy and strong. She introduced the evening by talking about what she requires from an accessible space – physically and emotionally.  She creates a sacred atmosphere and performs a ritual act that you would never see in a church. How to write about someone who looks like an angel, sent here to make us gasp and cry? Her grace defies the written word, you shall have to seek her out yourself – Kookoo the Bird Girl.

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