REVIEW: Bakla, Summerhall, Edinburgh Fringe ✭✭✭✭✭

Bakla Edinburgh Fringe

Venue: Summerhall
Star Rating 5
Bakla is a derogatory Tagalog , language from the Philippines, name for a homosexual man. We in the West have many equivalent terms. What Max Percy does in his extraordinary work is show us the deep connections between three hundred years of Spanish colonial rule and the racist attitudes that persist to this day. He uses his body to expose how sexuality is constructed and imposed on his body by colonialism and patriarchy.
His physicality is astonishing, dancing, acrobatic work, teasing. What is refreshing is that he knows his history and his context within the tropes imposed on him. He also combined this with the loosing of his virginity. Without giving any spoilers, we see how an image of the available young boy is literally imposed on him. The fractured first half is brought together towards a stunning climax 
If all this sounds a little heavy, there is much humour. He flirts with and teases his audience, knowing exactly what he is doing, and inviting a questioning gaze. The best physical theatre piece I’ve seen so far, it deserves a bigger audience and I urge you to catch this quite special piece