Ostensibly this one man show is the story of a gay man born into a devout Mormon family who struggles with the doctrinal prejudices of his church and community, flees the oppressive disapproval of Salt Lake City (getting himself excommunicated on the way), and ends up as a high end escort in the Sodam and Gamorrah that is New York City.
However the real fascination for the observer is the emotional and spiritual journey that Steven Fales describes; his initial attempts to convert and conform, going as far as therapy sessions to rid him of his SSA (same sex attraction), a two year missionary period in Portugal and even marrying a good Mormon girl and fathering two children.
It’s a difficult task to tell your own story in such a public manner and not seem to be self indulgent or to be using the audience as a confessional or extended therapy, but Fales cleverly manages to avoid self pity and cathartic histrionics and describes his very moving and very funny journey in a positive and ultimately uplifting way. He never rages against the bigots and hypocrites who dismiss him and he (eventually) takes full responsibility for his own hedonistic decline into sex and drug addiction.
We are left with the feeling that although the quest to find himself almost ended in self destruction he leaves the stage with his soul relatively at peace, able to enjoy his adored children whilst still able be himself, namely, a happily gay man.
Fales captivates his audience with a sometimes moving, often funny and occasionally shocking odyssey from sexual denial to emotional salvation.
- Keith Myers