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Writer/performer Ben Fallaci bares it all in Shower Chair, his debut one-man show. Shower Chair is a comedic revelation that exposes truths, confronts toxic friendships, and teaches us how to pick ourselves up after slipping. You can catch Shower Chair in London ahead of its Edinburgh Fringe run for one night only, 12 July, at 41 Frith Street (below Cuts) in Soho at 8 pm. 

In Shower Chair we meet Fallaci in the shower with a broken ankle, dependent on a geriatric shower chair. Through his storytelling, Fallaci creates vivid characters out of parody and places them in situations from his past to “get things off his chest.”

Over the course of a typical shower routine, Fallaci delivers an hour-long confessional on the events that take place leading up to the accident that breaks his ankle where he strips down to get honest. The story involves friendships that turn into nightmares and haunt Fallaci until it’s too late. Eventually, all toxic relationships will stab you in the back – or in this case, break your ankle.

Don’t you have all your best breakthroughs in the shower?

No topic is off limits in Shower Chair. Audiences are guided through Fallaci’s slip ups and mistakes, as well as the lessons he learns from them. In the shower, Fallaci interrogates his experience growing up on Cape Cod, coming out, and navigating substance abuse. Comedy is used to make light of the show’s more intense themes and find laughter in the darkness. While writing the piece, Fallaci used self-expression and introspection to help add direction and structure around his path toward self-acceptance and recovery. The combination of naked honesty with comedic storytelling makes Shower Chair stand out as a piece of experimental theatre that processes the past while searching for a more positive way forward. Finding laughter in the face of challenge is the strongest throughline of the show.  

Borrowing from his experience as a stand-up comedian, Fallaci doesn’t shy away from self-deprecation and irony. He pokes fun at himself, where he’s from, and his past decisions. Shower Chair is a meditation that asks, “how the hell did I get here?” In retracing his steps, Fallaci exposes personal answers showered in universal truths.

Fallaci wrote Shower Chair during a 3 month long dog sitting gig in Los Angeles. He works best with collaborators, so he brought on board director and personal friend, Fiona Kelly. Together, they turned a family home in Larchmont into the ultimate rehearsal space complete with a mic stand in the living room, various rewrites in the home office, and choreography sessions in the backyard. In addition to his collaboration with Kelly, Shower Chair was sculpted by countless conversations over coffee in the kitchen with patient East Side comics, who listened to hours of rambling that eventually were whittled down to a crisp 60 minute monologue. 

After previewing Shower Chair at the Broadwater Theatre in Los Angeles, it debuted at the 2023 Edinburgh Fringe Festival where it played 14 performances. Shower Chair reached diverse audiences in Edinburgh and Fallaci was met with emotional responses. Following this run, Zoe Novello and Sophie Visscher-Lubinizki (Speakerphone Productions) came on board as creative producers, and have helped to shape and develop the show – assisting the team in growing it from a humble stand up comedy set to a full theatrical experience. 

The show continues to grow as a consequence of including more creative thinkers. Shower Chair is not only thematically and contextually gay but it’s a product of queer collaboration. Directed, produced, and choreographed by queer theatre makers, it is a true product of queer collaboration and storytelling. 

Over the two years of Shower Chair’s existence, it has morphed and twisted into new forms. As the show changes, each viewing is unlike the last. You are invited to join Ben in London on Friday 12 July ahead of Shower Chair’s Fringe run for the most recent rendition of the play.

Shower Chair is on Friday 12 July at 41 Frith Street in Soho at 20:00. 

Shower Chair will also run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival from 2-24 August at Greenside Venue Lime Studio at 8:50 pm

Content Advisory: Substance Abuse, Nudity, Destruction of Property, Strong Language, Self Harm.

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