photo credit: Flavia Fraser-Cannon
Bubi Doll ((originally named ‘The Education of Hitler’)
Blending queer fantasy and taut historical investigation, ‘The Education of Hitler’ provocatively asks, ‘What if Hitler had in fact been hiding his true sexuality – and was gay?’
From this audacious starting point, Tim Luscombe’s darkly comic new play is a breathtaking exploration of power, politics, violence, gay sexuality, and what it means to be a man in the twentieth century. A rent boy in Vienna, Adolf slickly leads us through a massive and rich period of history. A curtain is lifted on the world of the Brown Shirts to reveal glorious technicolor monstrosities and grave ironies.
It reminds us that men who enjoyed fucking each other were also sending gay men to their deaths in the camps, and reveals the dark corners where all the secrets lie. How much of himself does Hitler have to sacrifice in order to retain power?
Note: the play was originally named “The Education of Hitler”
Captivating, shocking. Great insight and erudition.
I love The Education of Hitler. It’s breathtaking.
The thesis and its arc drive through like a squadron of stormtroopers. Making it fully an unrequited love affair between Adolf Hitler and Ernst Röhm has given the play brilliant focus. The theatre magic of it being an expressionistic rendering of the relationship between the stormtroopers and the rest of the fascist movement gives you wonderful licence, and yet there is enough overlapping with historical fact to make everything in the play seem to be reality.
This is a very remarkable piece of work. Borderline bonkers, but kind of brilliant, too. Fantastically bold and crazy. And also plausible. It’s a remarkable thesis, and, given what we know about Rohm et al, it might be more than just fantasy. A play in which the gay characters are also evil and violent? What box does that fit into? It’s a really good play and I really enjoyed it.