Dowie’s best known ‘stand-up play’ is a fierce and subversive monologue about gender expectations and stereotypes, spoken by someone who doesn’t want to be a ‘girl’, doesn’t want to wear skirts, wants to be John Lennon. What begins as frustration at the impracticality of the compulsory school skirt – only good for showing off legs and no good for playing football – becomes an articulate and passionate invective against obligatory femininity. Why is John Lennon Wearing A Skirt? is a powerful condemnation of society’s aggressive reinforcement of gender constructs, and the difficulties of finding a way to be who you want to be.
Why Is John Lennon Wearing A Skirt? was first presented in 1990 at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh.