Whenever composer John Cage was asked about his relationship with choreographer Merce Cunningham he would say ‘I Cook, He Does the Dishes.’ In fact they were a gay couple who remained together for more than 50 years. And oh — by the way — they also managed to create the American Avant-Garde. Their sexuality is often ignored. It will not be ignored in this play.

Poet, novelist, iconic playwright, theatre director and drag queen extraordinaire, Sky Gilbert, returns to the Toronto stage with his sizzling, syncopated production of I Cook, He Does the Dishes. The play blends traditional theatrical narrative with performance art and is sure to strike a bold, queer chord with audience members. The Theatre Centre’s Incubator’s intimate and malleable black box is the perfect space for this immersive work.

Read the latest issue of theBUZZ magazine for an exclusive interview with Sky Gilbert.

Did you know John Cage was in an open relationship? In the 1930s no less?! Open relationships, not just for Queen West hipsters after all. I Cook, He Does the Dishes examines an oft overlooked gay couple, John Cage and Merce Cunningham- is there a connection between their radical art forms and the avant-garde nature of their personal lives?

Featuring a cast of Toronto’s hottest Indie actors, I Cook, He Does the Dishes follows the true story of John Cage’s love affair with Merce Cunningham and the disintegration of Cage’s marriage to Xenia Kashevaroff Cage. In Gilbert’s piece John Cage, played by Fringe darling Shawn DeSouza-Coelho (The Night Hart Crane Kissed Me, Elektra), struggles to come to terms with his homosexuality after engaging in threesomes with his then wife, Xenia, played by Indie powerhouse Claire Burns (The Chance- Leroy Street, NOW’s Top Ten Artists to Watch 2017) and contemporary choreographer and dance maverick, Merce Cunningham, played by the coquetteish Aldrin Bundoc (Meet Cute-Roseneath, Body Politic- Buddies in Bad Times). 

Live sound design and performance by the multitalented Lyon Smith (Canstage, Blyth Festival) and lighting by newcomer Wesley Mckenzie and directed by the playwright, Sky Gilbert, himself. I Cook, He Does the Dishes is part play, part art happening and all queer.

I Cook, He Does the Dishes
by Sky Gilbert
Directed by Sky Gilbert
The Theatre Centre Incubator, 1115 Queen Street West, Toronto, 416.538.0988 
March 22-April 1st Thursday- Saturday 7pm, Sundays 2pm

Approximate running time: 1 hour and 15 minutes  Tickets



About the Author

Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist with a focus on travel, lifestyle, entertainment, and hospitality. He has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors, and other public personalities. He enjoys discovering delicious eats, tasting spirited treats, and being mesmerized by musical beats. Reach out - bryen@thebuzzmag.ca