entertainment

Meet the cast and characters of The HIV Monologues

2016-10-18
As Dragonflies Theatre open their new production 'The HIV Monologues' in London this week following a successful run with critically-acclaimed 'The Chemsex Monologues', writer Patrick Cash introduces the play. (Photos by Dionysis Livanis).
The HIV Monologues opens at Miranda London this Saturday for a limited three-day run. A play that looks at the effects of HIV within the gay community, from AIDS to PrEP, it tackles the subject with emotion, humour and empathy. Looking at both positive and negative perspectives, what emerges is an empowering story of overcoming stigma and finding self-worth.
Directed by Luke Davies, meet the cast and characters of the play below:
Alex (Denholm Spurr)
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Alex is an impulsive actor in his early twenties. He’s got sexual currency on the gay scene, but has a tendency to gabble and fill the gaps in conversations, which isn’t viewed as very cool by the circuit queens. He also knows nothing about HIV, although probably has unknowingly slept with positive guys in the past. But when his dream Tinder date reveals that he’s positive, Alex is pushed into direct confrontation with the virus.

Denholm Spurr played the part of Nameless in The Chemsex Monologues, described by reviewers as “mercurial and majestic.”

Nick (Sean Hart)

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Nick has just been diagnosed positive. He’s not sure where he contracted it: could have been the ex-boyfriend who was cheating on him, or it could have been one of the guys he fucked after he found out his boyfriend was cheating? He thought he shouldn’t come on this Tinder date, but a part of him was hoping he’d meet somebody who’d understand. And things are going so well with Alex, with such a connection, that he finds the courage to disclose.

Sean Hart played the part of Larry in Dragonflies Theatre’s previous production Queers. His TV/film credits include ITV, E4 and the film Pride.

Irene (Charly Flyte)

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Irene is a young Irish Catholic nurse in the 1980s. She’s left Ireland for reasons unknown and has to overcome her own religious prejudice, when she finds herself in charge of her first AIDS patient. Yet when she discovers that Eric is the same age, and begins to admire his bolshie sense of humour, a strong bond of friendship is forged. This leads Irene to go to extraordinary lengths to protect his care in a time when the flames of homophobia rage.

Charly Flyte played the part of Fag Hag Cath in The Chemsex Monologues, described by reviewers as "imbuing Cath with a layered vulnerability that seriously impresses."

Barney (Jonathan Blake)

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Barney is a writer who likes mojitos, cocaine and flowers, and lost his lover Eric in the 1980s. He’s resigned himself to death, but begins volunteering at an AIDS service in the 1990s, where he meets a young African woman. Through their talks, and when the life-saving medication of 1996 comes through, Barney is given a new lease of life to finish his play about Eric - a play he will eventually cast Alex in as a lead part.

Jonathan Blake was one of the first people in the UK to be diagnosed by HIV, and had a character based upon him in the film Pride. This marks a return to the stage for Jonathan.

The HIV Monologues plays on Saturday 22nd, Thursday 27th and Friday 28th October at Miranda London, the Ace Hotel, 100 Shoreditch High Street, E1 6JQ, at 7.30pm. Tickets £10 and available by clicking here.
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