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In a holding room, participants wait. A pageant is about to begin. No call time, perpetual purgatory.

Blending the myth of Orpheus with the Government Department of Work and Pensions, TOM is a vertigo-inducing pop-culture collision of working class and queer expression. With original live music and dance, TOM oscillates between hyper-speed pop, ambient waves, and auto-tune vocals. A boundary-pushing queer thriller, TOM is dripping in BULLYACHE’s signature brand of genre-bending artistry. Music, dance, visual art, and costumes are glue-gunned together in fragile harmonies.

BULLYACHE and cast burst into song, they fight, f***, live, laugh, and love… desperately deconstructing the heavy price of being in a world that demands too much.

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Commissioned by The Yard Theatre.

If you would like to get in touch about this work, please contact Hannah Slimmon, International Development Manager. Email:

A performer wearing black trousers, a white shirt, white braces, a white bow tie and an oversized black blazer with silver tassles and safety pins dandling off it stands in front on a microphone with their hands on their head. They have cropped blond hair and their face is painted white with overdrawn shiny dark red lipstick, vibrant red blusher angled upwards, blue eyeshadow and false eyelashes, and illegible letters drawn on their forehead with black eyeliner. They have a neutral expression as they look off into the distance.
Image by Genevieve Reeves

Video by Daniel Chan for The Yard Theatre