Travis Alabanza

Travis Alabanza is a performer, writer and theatre maker. Their unique mixture of performance, poetry, style, political views and risk taking performances has given them a unique placement both nationally and internationally.

In 2016/17 they became the youngest recipient of the Artist-in-Residence at The Tate Workshop Programme, and starred in Scottee’s theatre production Putting Words In Your Mouth at The Roundhouse.

They then played Amyl Nitrate in Chris Goode’s adaptation of Derek Jarman’s Jubilee to great acclaim at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester and Lyric Hammersmith, London. They have performed in venues such as V&A, Tate, ICA, and Barbican – and had their work featured in The Guardian, BBC, Huck Magazine and more.

Travis recently appeared in Dear Elizabeth at the Gate Theatre, Notting Hill and  The Ridiculous Darkness also at The Gate Theatre.

They are currently starring in Burgerz at the Traverse Theatre at The Edinburgh Festival.

5 STAR Reviews are in for Burgerz at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

 

  • It’s an angry piece that invites us to consider trans lives, but also incredibly funny, especially as Travis ad libs with their new stage partner. It’s a unique experience that I will be unpacking for days. It’s a piece that gets under your skin. Whatever your sexual and gender identification, catch this unique experience while you can. britishtheatre.com
  • Savagely unflinching in its deformation, yet without an ounce of malice. Alabanza is charming, humorous and approachable, even when emotions become volatile. To remind us that, even as we call ourselves ‘supporters’ and ‘allies’ the time for outrage is long overdue, the time for action was decades ago.This is the future of performing arts – unforgiving, creative and relentless. thereviewshub.com
  • This is a hilarious and heart-breaking 80 minutes that encompasses cookery demonstration (with a Fawlty Towers edge), a history lesson about thousands of years of trans and non-gender conforming bodies, a reminder of the everyday violence faced by many on the streets, and absolute faith in theatre as an act of activism. It’s also courageous in form, demanding that Alabanza always responds in the moment, and breaks out of the script.Alabanza takes an act of violence and transforms it into something both beautiful and brutal. In the process it reminds that personal freedom to walk down the street is “not freedom without yours.” Lyn Gardner
  • TRAVIS ALABANZA’S PARTICIPATORY BURGERZ CONFRONTS GENDERED REPRESSION, STRUCTURAL COMPLICITY AND THE WAY THEY’VE LEARNT TO EFFECTIVELY PROCESS TRAUMA – WITH PIERCING WRITING, AN IMPASSIONED CENTRAL PERFORMANCE AND A TRICKSY AND INTELLIGENT STRUCTURE. Arthur’s Seat
  • Alabanza is certainly one to watch, conveying a sensitivity that is moving and a courage that is empowering. Burgerz is about “the continuous cloud” surrounding transpeople. It’s an important piece of theatre, especially at a time of worsening transphobia. It challenges us all to take a stand against injustice. The Skinny
  • Much of this is very funny. Although fragile, Alabanza is sassy and witty, feeding off the audience like a seasoned cabaret star and riding the unpredictability of the interactive format. They generate roars of laughter, but the angry and intelligent script is also underscored with the real pain of exclusion, of being boxed in, of being trapped in a world where sexual and racial violence is prevalent and, too often, tolerated. The Guardian
  • The show is sensitive, entertaining, occasionally lyrical and a persuasive argument for activism that refuses to accept the way things are. British Theatre Guide
  • Burgerz is a beautiful, poignant piece, spiced with heady poetry. It’s a stark reminder of how labels are unhelpful, and how far British society has to go to become more tolerant with those who refuse to be boxed-in. The List
  • It’s a good piece, a passionate plea, full of feeling. Whatsonstage.com

 

  • The cast is uniformly excellent, but Travis Alabanza’s magnetic performance as a white soldier attempting to maintain control of a “civilised” narrative is particularly well-measured. THE STAGE
  • It is sardonic and political, but also really funny: Travis Alabanza is particularly amusing as the haughty Pellner, who at one point describes graphically native culinary rituals in a near swoon, only for it to become increasingly apparent that the horrified officer is talking about the making of sausages. TIME OUT
  • The  cast give exuberant performances:  The anti-bromance between Alabanza’s Pellner and Beh’s Dorsch threatens to turn into something more chilling as the journey progresses and this creates a buzzing fear alongside the comedy. The Guardian
  • The cast is energetic and has great chemistry.  Seraphina Beh and Travis Alabanza work great as the duo looking for Deutinger. A Younger Theatre
  • Rose is outstanding. the rest of the cast – Travis Alabanza, Shannon Hayes and Seraphina Bey – prove to be good too. THE TIMES

The Ridiculous Darkness

Travis will be starring in the Gate Theatre’s production of the Ridiculous Darkness 

Reviews for Burgerz:

  • “I really enjoy Travis as a performer. They have a gorgeous poise, and effortless hilarity.” Exeunt Magazine
  • “Funny, clever, and heartfelt, Burgerz is a piece that balances humour and emotion well. It’s must-see viewing that makes the despicable treatment of the trans community clear” ayoungerhteatre
  • “Alabanza is at their poised best when improvising with the audience, funny and knowing” The Stage
  • “What followed was a rollercoaster of emotions delivered to us by the superb performer that is Travis Alabanza. They are amazing, they hit the tone perfectly and they were able to go deep into my soul and bring out emotions that haven’t been visited in a long time. By the end of the show, every member of the audience was on their feet cheering for Alabanza and if the rest of the audience was like me, I’m sure they wanted to go and hug Alabanza too.” lontheatre1.com
  • “To say that ‘Burgerz’ is moving would be an understatement. Travis Alabanza, a prominent young performance artist, has created a compelling, powerful show in response to the violence they face as a Black, gender non-conforming trans person. It is intense, and absolutely vital, theatre.”

Reviews for Jubilee

  • “Travis Alabanza is an entertaining presence as the gang’s nominal leader Amyl Nitrate” The Stage
  • “Alabanza’s rasping, expansive, melancholy confrontations with the audience. In powder-pink skirt and jacket, a long string of pearls and high bootees with pom-poms, Alabanza (who prefers to use a gender-neutral pronoun) dynamically wires spectators into what’s going on.” The Observer
  • “For all that it’s an ensemble piece, with an all-round brilliant cast, the show belongs to Alabanza’s swaggering, acerbic Amyl. Goode’s script gifts them with lacerating wit, as they archly lecture us on the history of human rights and the British Empire. But Alabanza can also slice right through the irony and patter, suddenly stripping everything back to naked, shuddering anger.” Exeunt Magazine
  • “The part is played to the mischievous, accusatory hilt by transgender “femme” performer Travis Alabanza” The Telegraph
  • “But for every facepalm moment, such as the dispiritingly safe collective howlalong of Toyah’s greatest hit “I Want To Be Free”, there is an unexpectedly thrilling one, such as Alabanza’s riff on the “no future” motif” The Financial Times
  • “Our MC for the evening is the excellent Travis Alabanza, as Amyl Nightrate, a confrontational figure in a powder-pink twinset, a long rope of pearls and high-altitude bootees. This character, gentle and intimidating, is the brains behind the marauding girl gang with the penchant for suffocating one-night-stands and the most articulate mouthpiece for the show’s questions and concerns – such as whether, art would become totally redundant, if you lived a life of integrity where your desires were realised.” The Independent 
  • “Performance artist Travis Alabanza gives a brilliantly charismatic and assured performance, having great rapport with the audience, bringing out layers of meaning especially regarding gender and sexuality—a hot topic at the moment.” British Theatre Guide
  • “They’re a joyous and riotous bunch led by Travis Alabanza’s schoolmarmish Amyl Nitrate, our impish emcee for the evening dressed in baby pinks and pearls” Whatsonstage.com
  • “Travis Alabanza in particular delivering an engaging and entertaining performance as gang leader Amyl Nitrate” Franklymydearuk.co.uk
  • “Travis Alabanza gives a blazing performance as ringleader” Evening Standard
  • “The straight-talking Amyl, played on stage by the mesmerising transgender performer Travis Alabanza” The Guardian