147Hz Can't Pass
- Deborah Chu
- 21 November 2018
A powerful and moving exploration of a trans non-binary experience
'Is this too trans for trans theatre?' Ink laughingly throws out to the audience, right before delving into a meditation on bathrooms. Alternatively harrowing and warm, 147hz Can't Pass is a one-person show about the experience of being a trans non-binary individual, moving swiftly and fluidly across a wide scope of topics and feelings around being trans, from the pain of being misgendered to the safety of surrounding oneself in a queer community.
Ink delivers a raw performance that deftly melds projection, poetry and movement to craft a personal meditation on the queer experience. A dialogue between themselves and their body is a particular flash of brilliance, as Ink uses projections on screen to explore a fraught relationship that sees gratitude bound inextricably with resentment and betrayal, as the body's natal biology fails to reflect the truth of who they are. Such moments do much to highlight the expansive spectrum that lies between body and soul, the 'male' and 'female': it's truly unfortunate, then, that of the three stylistic components of the show, projection ultimately feels the most underutilised.
From the beginning, the audience is warned not to expect any 'neat arcs', and this statement is a necessary indictment of how trans stories are often framed in mainstream media: as didactic 'exhibits' for the edification of others, rather than flesh and blood. However, the sheer range of complicated emotions and topics that 147hz Can't Pass covers can oftentimes risk feeling muddled together, despite an irrefutably potent performance propelling it onwards.