Much like your high school sexual education assemblies, the new Rogue Burlesque show “Your Body and You” tackles topics like STDs, contraception, health and hygiene. Unlike your high school sex ed class (probably), this lesson involves stripteases and pasties and comes with a warning: “This assembly may contain references to street drugs, sexually transmitted diseases, vibrators, digestive processes, dental hygiene and smoking.”
“Every one of us is very enthusiastic about healthy views on sexuality—accepting your body, accepting yourself for who you are—and we can all relate those awkward, embarrassing moments of self-discovery or embarrassing high school puberty mishaps,” says Rogue Burlesque member and “Your Body and You” producer Brandy Wine. “We feel like our audience could relate to that, too, so we wanted to burlesque-ify it.”
The resulting production is a tongue-in-cheek reaction to the, “Don’t have sex, ’cause you will get pregnant and die,” style of sex ed that Coach Carr teaches in Mean Girls and that actual school districts around the country promote as part of their health curriculum. The show takes the form of a high school sex ed assembly rather than just a class—which gives the performers an added opportunity for zaniness—and covers topics ranging from safe sex and different forms and expressions of sexuality to personal hygiene and even issues like peer pressure and fitting in socially. The informative, fun, bizarre and still sexy show culminates in a dramatic grand finale you won’t want to miss: an epic battle of contraception tools versus sperm and STDs.
So, yes, it’s probably a little bit different from your average sex ed class.
But while the production itself may be irreverent and over the top, it was important to Wine and the rest of the Rogue Burlesque troupe to make this a learning experience as well, which is why the Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health which will be on hand to pass out free condoms and lube packets, answer audience questions and direct people to any educational resources they need after the show. According to Wine, the idea is that you can go see some burlesque, laugh about all of the issues that may have made you crumple into an awkward pile of shame during your formative years and then get real, helpful information if you want it. “Bodies are just funny!” says Wine. “They do ridiculous things, and they can be confusing, and so we wanted people there to help you understand them.”
“But yeah,” she adds with a laugh. “There’s a lot of sex and a lot of dildos.”
Your Body and You: A Theatrical Comedy Striptease Spectacular
Sunday, July 19 and Sunday, July 26
Oberon, 2 Arrow St.
Tickets start at $15 and are available on the American Repertory Theater site. 18+.