Returning after sell-out development dates in 2019, Swimming, Alex Bower’s new play about bisexuality and “choosing lanes”, returns this month to London’s White Bear Theatre for its world premiere in a three-week season, running from 3 to 21 August 2021, with a press night on 4 August.
Funny, frank and sexy, Swimming tussles with big, twenty-first century questions around choice, taboos and the conflict of identity.
Envious of his best mate’s care-free life and wild nights out, Dan suddenly splits up from his long-term girlfriend. Unexpectedly, he soon falls head over heels for Sam after a chance meeting at the pool. But for reasons he cannot explain or admit to himself, Dan keeps their new relationship a secret. Over the hot summer months, as they fall deeper in love and the truth comes out, Dan is forced to confront his prejudices and fears and ask if he must choose a lane in life.
Swimming explores the complexities, inherent misunderstandings and conflicts of male bisexuality – a really under-explored topic in popular culture. It looks at masculinity in the modern day, career uncertainty and frustration and the nature of commitment and choice in the world that tells us we can have it all. It grapples with the reality of being a gay man in a culture that’s more accepting of queerness than ever, as well as being a humorous and entertaining story for gay people, straight people and everyone in between.
Writer Alex Bower had sell-out success with his debut play, Nights, and Swimming sold out its development run at the White Bear just prior to the pandemic. The show is now directed by Kayla Feldman, whose production of Lucy Foster’s Lobster at Theatre503 received rave reviews in 2018, and produced by Eve Burns.
The cast of Swimming are George Jones (Dan), Dominic Rawson (Sam), Rose Dickson (Marianne) and Andy Sellers (Ant). Sound is by Anna Short, lighting by Holly Ellis, music by Arthur Sawbridge. Shira Kaliski is assistant director.
Swimming runs from 3 to 21 August 2021 at the White Bear Theatre, Kennington Park Road, London SE11 4DJ, with performances (70 minutes) Tuesdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm. Tickets are priced £15. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE!
What the critics say
“A memorable new play” – The Spy in The Stalls ★★★★
“Truly intelligent theatre” – Boyz Magazine ★★★★
“The deft production is acted with simple sincerity and, with its wry humour and flailing characters, the play is enormously endearing” – Sam Marlowe, The Times on Lobster
Day 21: Did you know the average number of drafts for a theatre script is between 6-7? This is our 5th draft and our writer is still as joyous as ever! #30DaysofSwimming #30DraftsofSwimming #ScriptChaos pic.twitter.com/n9hdiTDyfz
— Swimming – The Play 🏳️🌈 (@PlaySwimming) July 27, 2021
Alex Bower (he/him) – Playwright – Alex is a writer and producer from London. Swimming follows Alex’s highly acclaimed first play, Nights, which ran for two sell-out seasons. His short plays have been produced at Theatre 503 as part of the Rapid Writer Response. In 2018, Alex graduated from the London Film School with an MA in Screenwriting, and he has written and produced short films that have shown at festivals across the country. Alex has also worked as a script reader and editor for some of Britain’s leading film and television companies. He is currently working as a Mentor and Teacher at Mossbourne Community Academy in Hackney.
Kayla Feldman (she/her) – Director – Kayla is an Anglo-American writer and director for the page, stage, and screen, currently residing in London. She trained on the MA in Theatre Directing at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, Shakespeare’s Globe Directing Studio, and Directors Lab North, Toronto. She also holds a BA in Theatre and Performance (International) from the University of Leeds. She is a Co-Founder of Snapper Theatre, a tutor at Identity School of Acting, and has been a script-reader for Hampstead Theatre, Associate Producer for Maiden Speech Festival, and a literary associate for Abingdon Theatre Company in New York. Recent credits include: Dear Peter (Iris Theatre, 2020), Sleepwalking (as assistant director, Hampstead Theatre, 2020), Can’t Stop Won’t Stop (Maiden Speech Festival, 2019), and A-GAY (Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin, 2019). She currently has an immersive production in development with Swans Events, as well as two short films in pre-production (as director).