Ga(y)me(n)Play: Deconstructing masculinity


Ga(y)me(n)Play can be read as Gay Men Play, Game Play or Men Play – it is up for interpretation, much like the masculinity that forms the focus as a theme. By Olorato Mongale.

Choreographed by Kamogelo Molobye, a Rhodes University Masters student, this theatre and motion production seeks to deconstruct social definitions of manhood and masculinity. It is part of a series curated by Gary Gordon as part of the Rhodes University Masters choreography program titled Choreo/PLAY.

With a cast of nine individuals, Molobye uses his piece to challenge stereotypes of masculinity and to explore the definition of ‘man’ and manhood through exploring the images of a man through vulnerability and intimacy. “I was interested in ideas of performative masculinity, hypermasculinity and homoerotic behaviour,” says Molobye.

The “Play” comes from looking at the dynamics of masculinity as a game that men play. It forms a wordplay between athleticism and sports and how they structure men’s behaviours toward and interpretations of one other – especially in athletic environments – and how they bring that into their social spaces.

Check out CueTube‘s interview with Molobye and clips from the show below (video report by Mihlali Ntsabo and Tsholofelo Tselaemang):

The piece was introduced to its audience by the following: “In a time where manhood and masculinity lacks a language to fully realise and define itself, Ga(y)me(n)Play is a physical theatre performance that seeks to explore the nuanced images of a man through vulnerability and intimacy that challenges stereotypes of masculinities.” Molobye highlights how both men and women construct ideas of masculinity in language, and how he seeks to deconstruct those ideas.

“Masculinity, patriarchy and misogyny exist so strongly and they are automatically accepted in society and perpetuated without being questioned,” says Molobye.

His aim, through his play, is to question how we perceive masculinity, and to force an interrogation of a feminine interpretation of masculinity in order to re-define what it is to be masculine.

We asked three cast members (Kyle Prinsloo, Ashton du Toit and Jordan Pitt) about their views on manhood and masculinity.