"BURGERZ" by Travis Alabanza
Produced by Hackney Showroom
June 19, 2021
Presented in partnership with the LGBTQ+ Resource Center at Virginia Tech
Hurled words. Thrown objects. Dodged burgers.
After someone threw a burger at them and shouted a transphobic slur, Travis Alabanza became obsessed with burgers. How they’re made, how they feel and smell. How they travel through the air. How the mayonnaise feels on your skin.
Wednesday, April 6, 6 PM
DISCUSSION WITH TRAVIS ALABANZA
Street and Davis Performance Hall, Anne and Ellen Fife Theatre
Free; registration required
This show is the climax of their obsession—exploring how trans bodies survive and how, by them reclaiming an act of violence, we can address our own complicity. Carving out a place for themselves as one of the U.K.’s prominent trans voices, Alabanza presents a performance that is funny and timely, yet unsettling and powerful.
Real meat is cooked on stage. The performance contains haze, loud noises, mature language, and themes of harrassment and assault.
Alabanza is an award-winning theatre maker, writer, and performer, as well as a previous member of the Royal Court Young Writers group and Barbican young poets. Burgerz has toured internationally to Sao Paulo, Southbank Centre, Bristol Old Vic, Smock Alley Dublin, HAU Berlin, and Edinburgh Festival Fringe, where it won the Total Theatre award. Other work includes My White Best Friend and Living Newspaper Edition 3 (Royal Court online), Skype d8 (Bush Theatre online), Overflow (Bush Theatre), and In Tandem (Paines Plough online).
Alabanza has performed their solo work in a range of venues, galleries, and mediums. In 2016-2017 they were the youngest recipient of the Tate Gallery Workshop residency. They have written for Metro, Vice, Gal-Dem, The Independent, Dazed, Gay Times, and more.
In 2018-2019 Alabanza was listed on the “Dazed100”—100 people defining culture, awarded a Gay Times Honours award for their work in the LGBT+ community, and listed in the Evening Standard “25 influential people under 25.” Recently in The Sunday Times Style, Bernadine Evaristo picked Alabanza as a “trailblazer of the future” to watch.
In February 2021 Alabanza engaged with Virginia Tech students and faculty and the wider Blacksburg community during a virtual residency, which included online class visits and an online conversation with Alabanza and their collaborator Sam Curtis Lindsay about the development and performance of Burgerz. This is Alabanza's first in-person performance at the Moss.
Related Event: Discussion with Travis Alabanza
This year, Virginia Tech marks its 150th year with an ongoing celebration of its impact and engagement. The arts are woven throughout the university's history and are a critically important part of its future. This event is part of a range of special performances, exhibitions, and experiences happening throughout the month of April that demonstrate the incredible value the arts and creative experiences have at Virginia Tech.