Bette Bourne, the subject of the documentary “Bette Bourne – It Goes With The Shoes“, will speak at a Q&A following the screening of a film about his life – a life described as ‘a real life Priscilla Queen of the Desert adventure’, by the Directors, Mark Ravenhill and Jeremy Jeffs.
Born in 1939 as Peter Bourne, Bette Bourne is a stage and film actor, drag queen and activist from Hackney, London. In the 1960’s he appeared in TV series such as The Avengers and The Prisoner. In 1969 he appeared alongside Sir Ian McKellen in a touring double bill of Marlowe’s Edward II and Shakespeare’s Richard II. In the 1970’s he put his career on hold to become an activist with Gay Liberation Front, becoming part of a gay commune in London. It was during this period he started wearing drag and changed his name to Bette.
The film, based on the play ‘A Life in Three Acts’ (Mark Ravenhill), takes us from his working class childhood during the war, through the radicalism of the 1970’s, touring the world with his cabaret troupe, Bloolips, to now – a 75 year old man ‘who never leaves his home without his bus pass and lipstick’.
Bette Bourne has also appeared in recent films (Cheri, Caught Looking and Edward II and on stage at The Globe (Romeo and Juliet) , Lyric Theatre (A Picture of Dorian Gray) and National Theatre (Theatre of Blood).
Bette Bourne – It Goes with the Shoes’ will be screened as part of the ninth Shropshire Rainbow Film Festival – ‘a wall to wall weekend of films’ – at 1pm on Saturday 18th October at the OMH Cinema, Shrewsbury.
We are absolutely delighted that Bette has agreed to come and speak after the screening. We are looking forward to a humorous, entertaining and engaging Q&A with the audience’, said Peter Roscoe, one of the organisers.

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