The Wellingtonista

Random stuff about Wellington since 2005

Review: Whore &, Lashings of whipped cream

by librarykris on September 25, 2014 in Theatre

I had high hopes for Whore. Described in the promo material as “Contemporary, topical, true-life based monologues told by six characters…this work is a collection of stories about street sex workers in Auckland, New Zealand” I thought it would be an up to date exploration of modern, decriminalised sex work. Well, I was disappointed. If you played a drinking game where you took a sip at every cliché about sex workers, at every offensive comment about men, women, gay and queer people, then you could be smashed in 15 minutes. But then you’d have to sit through another 60 or so minutes before it ends, so don’t do that. *

Instead, you should go to Lashings of Whipped Cream which is playing at the same theatre after Whore. This is a 19 year old script by Fiona Samuel that treats sex workers and their clients with respect and empathy. It’s performed by Rhubarb Rouge, the alternate persona of Ricky Beirao. Although the play was written as a monologue for a woman, it works very well with a drag diva in the hot pants. Er, hot seat.

Mistress Dominique is quite surprised to find us in her dungeon and in such a large number. She says that she won’t have time to deal with us all so perhaps she should just talk us through her services.  There’s a little bit of squirming in the seats from the audience as she describes the cost and service she provides. There is equipment all over the stage which provides an excellent visual aid for each service. She’s also between clients so takes the opportunity to refuel herself – after all, domination is very hard work.

Ms Rouge wears a fantastic costume from Marquis de Sade in Melbourne. The audience gets to have a good look at it as she totters up and down the steps at BATS talking to us. There is some audience interaction with some saucy questions. Ms Rouge is gentle (mostly…okay, sort of) with the people she interacts with.

Good direction from Geoff Pinfield and a grounded performance from Beirao mean that the show is funny, sassy, and worth your money.

 

*Yes, I’m exaggerating for comic effect. It might take 40 minutes.

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