The only other time I had been to a live sex show was in the Red Light District of Amsterdam. The thing was crude – even amid the slew of debauchery that makes up tourist Amsterdam. Mostly, that was because of the concrete venue, Eurotrash techno, and slimy men masturbating and jeering behind me. But the Saturday night debut of Cum and Glitter at an underground venue in the Mission was an entirely different experience. Hosted by the elegant and welcoming Ginger Murry of Whore Magazine, the show is the brainchild of Ava Solanas and Maxine Holloway, who started the new monthly event as an expressive outlet for the sex worker community.
The show started at a little past ten p.m. Attendees descended wooden steps to an intimate underground event space that resembled a 1920’s speakeasy. The room was dimly lit, dotted with small round tables, and overflowing with anticipation. Garter belts and playsuit-flaunting babes appeared, accompanied by the deep, warm bellows of a cello being played by the artist Unwoman that vibrated through the air.
The series’ first performance, an enchanting strip tease by Dorian Faust, set a sexy mood that carried through the rest of the evening, despite ensuing acts that registered higher on the comedy scale. Faust looked like a mermaid in her sequined outfit of varying blue hues, and her nimble body moved in waves, creating an optical illusion that carried on until she was stripped down to just her gold and blue glitter and thong.
Next on stage were Courtney Trouble and Maxine Holloway, the latter of whose nipples were swiftly cinched with clothes pins, mouth gagged with her brunette mane. The evening proceeded in this manner, switching off between sensual and expressive solo dances and the longer duo role-plays that involved plenty of spankings, toys, and at times, ordinary household items used in surprisingly creative ways.
Eden Alexander’s lesson on how to be a dominatrix was awe-inspiring to say the least. She spoke with comedic conviction as she took charge of her male submissive, who was ordered to worship his mistress -- when he wasn’t being used as a standing surface for her stillettoes. Alexander’s delightful sass was perfectly complemented by her -- even sassier -- hot pink latex floor-length dress.
Dialogue and interactions were clearly exaggerated, and the performance was more stylized than realistic. However, the sheer and genuine excitement of the performers made the show feel unforced. The audience reaped all the usual benefits of watching a performance in a small venue, and we were able to intimately enjoy every soft moan and fleeting expression –- moments that are normally missed entirely in onscreen porn. Being eye-level with the action literally involved the audience that much more in the ecstasy of the performers -- when Solanas squirted in all her glittering glory to the swells of the cello mere feet to her right, barely missing my shoe in the process, it was as if she was coming for all of us.
It is billed as a live sex show, but don’t be misled -- the first installation of “Cum and Glitter” was not simply an explicit display of intercourse as it was a series of rather light-hearted scenarios acted out by nine gorgeous women who understand how pleasurable the mix of consent and wild imagination can be. Whether your fantasy is a naughty baby sitter, sexy shoeshine, or being gagged with a rubber chicken, there was an elated smile on everyone’s face by the end of the night -- it was clear that everyone left the show feeling quite satisfied.
Check out Cum and Glitter's website for information on the collective's next show