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Kissing, groping, hugging, rubbing, humping and licking – these are the primary elements of an intensely physical vocabulary that makes the piece strikingly visceral and shamelessly sexual.  Each of the performers brings their own distinctive way of moving to enact stories of promiscuity, masturbation, experimentation, sadomasochism and bondage, bears, voyeurism, and fetishism in a show littered with discarded clothing, pervy underwear and gratuitous nudity.  Provocative and dynamic, Perverts! is sure to amuse, perhaps shock, and hopefully inspire our audiences to imagine the limitless possibilities of sex and sexual pleasure.

The show was inspired by Michael Warner’s seminal book The Trouble with Normal: Sex, Politics and the Ethics of Queer Life, and gets to grips with issues around sex and moralism. Built from personal stories, Perverts! is an intimate glimpse into desires, pleasures and  relationships and the role shame and regulation play in the development of a sexual identity.

We’ve created this piece in response to what we perceived as a growing sense of moralism in the press and media and in our day-to-day lives. It seems like everyone is trying so hard to be respectable and the divide between what’s respectable and what’s not appears to be widening.  Although the boundaries of what’s acceptable have shifted a little, to include things like monogamous gay relationships (or gay marriage), everything beyond those boundaries is more readily rejected.  The result: more people feel shame about their sex lives.   And we don’t think they should.    To make matters worse, governments have a habit of interfering in individual’s sexual autonomy, such as the Spanner Case (which is still unresolved and has raised many questions as far as BDSM communities are concerned) and the recent introduction of the Extreme Pornography legislation.   We argue in this piece for sexual autonomy and that if people cared less about appearing normal, they might enjoy sex as much as we do.  We created this piece to celebrate perversion as a resistance to shame and moralism.  

After its success in Montreal's Saint Ambroise Fringe Festival in June 2009, and at Act Art 7- Children of the Damned in London in November 2009, we are redeveloping the show.  In 2009, the performance was seen by 550 audience members, and we are building on that success. We hope to give the piece stronger political acuity, dealing with the issues at stake with a stronger voice and more clarity.  Though pleased with the initial version of Perverts! we hope to develop a version of the show that is less tentative, less afraid to say things we didn’t dare to say and tackle aspects of perversion that may be controversial or uncomfortable (and therefore the issues that need to be addressed!).

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