Steak and Chelsea 2008-2010

What happens when a local femme with no secrets meets an international butch with no brakes? Magic! One has Down Syndrome, the other a Brain Injury (and a seriously checkered past) ...

On Stage

Performer / Devisors: Rachel High, Julie McNamara

Rachel has been a performer with No Strings Attached since 2002. Julie is a performer well-known on international disability arts and queer arts circuits. They met at the 2006 Art of Difference Conference in St Kilda, Victoria.

Since it's conception, Steak n' Chelsea (working title) has been developed in partnership with Feast, Adelaide's annual festival of queer arts and culture. Julie's trips to Adelaide have been supported by Arts Council England. Two development stages have been supported by the Richard Llewellyn Arts and Disability Trust.

For the final stage of script development (mid-2010), Rachel and director Maude Davey will collaborate in Adelaide. Julie will join them via Skype, then return to Adelaide for October rehearsals and the full production in Feast, 23-27 November 2010.


  • 2008, Feast's "Just a Nibble" program, Higher Ground (Adelaide, South Australia) 21-23 November
  • Director: Paulo Castro
  • 2009 Brady Arts Centre, London, 2 September
  • Director: Caglar Kimyoncu
  • Set designer: Charlotte Picton
  • Lights: Gursen Houssein


  • With a glimpsed history of bitterness, jealousy and vulnerability, the two of them begin to reinvent their dysfunctional relationship. But Chelsea not only holds her ground in the face of Steak's wheedling and bullying, but turns it around - using tests, rules and manners to reset the power balance. From poetry and table manners to dance lessons, she puts the bemused Steak through her paces. And later it becomes clear that Chelsea has actually had the power for quite some time. ... The show will go into further development next year and certainly has the scope to be worked up into a breath-taking full production.
    Kate Larsen, Disability Arts Online Read full review