They gave us root beer to drink and ping-pong balls to throw at Temperance scolds. Mac ground his crotch into the most stuffy, middle-aged guy white guy he found the audience. It was three hours without intermission, pure anarchic and, yes, exhausting bliss. *****Time Out New York
The year of the Easter Rising, 1916 was a particularly important and turbulent year in Ireland’s history. 100 years on, in his first Northern Ireland appearance, the flamboyant and vocally gifted Obie Award-winning New York performer Taylor Mac brought a series of special participative concerts to the Belfast International Arts Festival, reflecting on Ireland’s experiences during the first decades of the 20th century.
In his first two concerts, his astute take on music and culture spanned the years before, during and after the First World War, from 1896 through to 1926. His third concert featured songs from the last 100 years, from 1916, the year of the Battle of the Somme and the Easter Rising, through to 2016. Accompanied by a live band and dressed in a dazzling array of costume creations, Taylor Mac had audiences laughing, thinking and cheering as he reflected on notions of authority, class, empire, gender, patriotism and war, and differing perceptions and attitudes to how history is made and viewed.
Co-commissioned by 14-18 NOW and Belfast International Arts Festival.
The Belfast International Arts Festival receives public support from The Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Belfast City Council, The British Council and Tourism Northern Ireland.