actor Sherilee Kahui wearing exciting blue eye makeup looks quizzically at the cameraHank of Thread presents (a smidge of) Pidge, a black comedy about identity and the anxiety that is inextricably tied to it. The show fuses clowning, song and dance to show the myriad ways that we are all simultaneously the same and different, ultimately celebrating the absurdity of it all.  

Written by Sherilee Kahui and Jimmy Sutcliffe, directed by Hannah Clarke, the show has played in cities around Australia and New Zealand. Solo performer Sherilee Kahui answers some of our questions.

“The first provocation for this work came when my co-creators and I were packing in my Master’s Major project The Reviewers at Anvil House in 2014. A pigeon had built the saddest nest you ever saw: literally just a couple of twigs on concrete, and there was a lonely, solitary little egg laying there. It was too much.

It started us thinking about the innate tragedy of existence and how ridiculously absurd the world is. When we thought of a show with the solo performer being a pigeon, we started thinking about what it means to be an individual in the world, but also what it means to be a part of your community, or flock. We had initially based the structure of the piece on the stages of an existential crisis, but now it is more of an exploration of social anxiety. Much relatable awkwardness, which the pigeon physicality lends itself to perfectly!  

This show seems to resonate with people who are into outsider art, regardless of age. I had thought it wasn’t really for your cis hetero dudes, but then my friend’s boyfriend loved it in Melbourne. He felt the “slice of life” vignettes were true reflections of how he experiences the world. In saying that, the “WTF” comments have all come from that demographic.  

I think it is a good show for people who think a lot about life and maybe get into their own heads a bit much. I think it helps to know that were are all experiencing a variation on the same theme, and that we aren’t alone, even though we are very much alone. I hope people leave feeling good about themselves. Or maybe better. Even if it’s just a smidge? Ugh. sorry.

Ummm. I think the show is pretty coo..l… ( I hate myself).”