Fall is sad. The plants die, the temperature drops, and the darkness comes out way too early. As East Coasters, we learn both how to complain and to cope with these very very predictable changes. The way we cope in Philadelphia: culture. So to distract ourselves an abundance of performances, festivals, art shows, and cocktails come out to play.
The most playful of all? Lovertits. This gem came to us at the end of the Fringe Festival, and disguised itself as a burlesque “esque” show. While there is nudity, and lots of it, Annie Wilson is transforming the media into an uncomfortable and twisted critique on the female gaze and throwing in an amazing amount of ego driven metaphors, which are reimagined by three hilarious and fearless leading ladies.
The show begins with a flaky or perhaps insecure androgynous type character casually dipping us into their world. She gives us a play on sex, by using her feet to pick up a musical instrument.In fact, each actor is revealed to us as if we are at a talent show. We get a puppet strip tease without a puppet, and then a historical arousal in Ben Franklin’s female counter part, Jenna.
As the performance progresses, the actors interact together and then resume their original characters, as if having moments of lucidity within a haze of hallucination. We see, in my opinion, references to Mary Magdalene, Carolee Schneemann’s Interior Scroll, and Boticelli to name a few. As the women climax, they receive mating calls from each other, and comic relief in the form of a trumpet, which continues to feel symbolic. God perhaps?
Without being able to due it justice, almost every moment in the show is hilarious, and it has the demeanor of a great comic, Amy Sedaris for example. Every symbol or mating noise or performed orgasm seems to be placed to show us how smart they are or perhaps more to the point how smart we are as viewers. To give us a choice on how we view the world through sex. Don’t get too comfortable based on this description as the show is mostly not in words. These actors are all seasoned dancers, and amidst the cackle and awe are elegant and beautiful playing to their strengths.
You come away from Lovertits feeling lighter. I think this is so because Wilson takes away some of the burden we feel every day having to much or not enough sex. Being gay, straight, or other. And the millions of factors making humans so fucking difficult. Like Jenna Ben Franklin herself, Lovertits is giving you just a little bit of freedom.
The show is over for now, but I am sure will resurface again check out Annie Wilson and of course my dear friend Christina Gesualdi, Jenna Horton, Ilse Zoerb the stars of the show.