project image
Antti Ahonen

first performed on May 7, 2015
Teatterisali, Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
performed three times in 2015


Helsinki, Finland / Toronto, Canada


This work was motivated by bisexual invisibility and erasure. I have attempted to approach this problem positively, queering the notion of “presence” in performance by reclaiming this absence as a site of possibility and the basis of a queer performance strategy. “Always Be(come) A Unicorn” is a performance in seven actions.

I. A light emanates from a hole in the floor. I emerge, dressed in a plush pink dinosaur onesie, holding a toy piano. I play a fragment of The Smiths’ “Ask.”

II. Microphone in hand, I form two space blankets into small peaks, amplifying every sound they make.

III. I take off the onesie, wearing only a white jockstrap. I stand on a table with an overhead projector and pull 20 meters of sliver ribbon from my anus while reciting a text about a man who criticizes the nature of my work and identity.

IV. I explore two silver stilettos with my feet until I am wearing them. I spray my hair and body with hairspray. I roll over a space blanket, which sticks to me, becoming a dress. I place one stiletto in front of a can of shaving cream and trigger the foam with the other.

V. I crumple the space blanket dress into a ball and place it on the floor between some work lamps. I describe how I had imagined gathering around a real campfire, hearing music playing. I sing a bit of Fleetwood Mac’s “Everywhere.” I describe how you would notice a brown bear in the distance, approaching the campfire. It would approach you and lean in over one shoulder, its face just next to yours. The bear, I explain, stays with you for the rest of the evening.

VI. Four overhead projectors with ribbon on them cast shadows toward the center of the room. I hold the microphone to my mouth and move around until I am tangled in its cable. I untwist myself and place the microphone on the floor. I lie on the floor next to some ribbon and inhale several times until it enters my throat and I choke.

VII. I stand under a spotlight listening to Robyn’s “Dancing On My Own” through a pair of earbuds. A person in a bear costume turns on a foam machine. Strobe lights flash as the foam piles up around my body. I sing, “Why can’t you see me? Oh…” I recede into the pile of foam.