Meet the angel Aiden, sent by God to save us from destruction. In, The Sodomite, this campy christian cabaret, Aiden Strickland appears, donned head to toe in sequins, and tells the story of Sodom and Gomorrah in a way you’ve never seen before.
Strickland is hilarious from start to finish, working the audience to really keep us laughing the whole way through. The jokes are excellently written and brilliantly executed throughout the show, with not a single beat missed or joke not landed. The songs really steal the show, with a fabulous version of ‘Anything Goes’ and a parody of ‘We Didn’t Start the Fire’ which chronicles the history of homophobia from ancient biblical times to the modern day.
The central framing device of the show – a phone call with Strickland’s childhood priest – works perfectly to underpin the emotional heart of the show, reflecting on the bitter feeling of dealing with your former faith. The voiceover was seamless and harmonised well with Strickland’s energy.
More than just entertainment, the show presents some innovative and surprising angles on the traditional bible stories. Contrasting serious history side by side with show stopping songs (I could only pray that my lecturers were as entertaining).
What really elevated The Sodomite was when Strickland was vulnerable, reflecting on the experience of being a queer brought up in the Catholic faith, not quite being able to leave it behind. Being able to both make jokes about paedophilia in the church, yet 30 minutes later have me nearing tears on the same topic, shows just how talented a storyteller Strickland is.
In every aspect of this show, Strickland must have been talking to an angel.
VAULT Festival 2023 runs Tuesday 24th January to Sunday 19th March, full listings and ticket information can be found here.
This review was written by a participant of the VAULT Festival New Critics Programme in partnership with Theatre Weekly. For more information about the VAULT Festival New Critics Programme, and all of our 2023 participants, please visit: https://vaultfestival.com/new-critics-programme/