Sex on stage doesn’t have to be awkward

Verity Johnson explores the art of staged intimacy and offers tips for avoiding the cringe factor.

The worst sex-based arts scene I’ve ever seen happened in a cabaret show.

It was held in one of those grimy-chic suburbs where every roadside skip has a coffee bar hidden inside it. Everyone in the crowd was doing the aloof, furious, look-at-me-don’t-look-at-me scowl.

We were mid-way through, and the next act came on stage dressed in what looked like a giant pink rubber glove. The sort that your Mum would don to scrub a casserole dish. 

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The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui is New Zealand’s online hub for creative people. Our aim is to support talented, innovative individuals and organisations, back the creative industries and advocate for creativity as an essential ingredient in the cultural and economic wealth of New Zealand. The Big Idea provides resources for the whole creative sector, including those seeking to turn their ‘big ideas’ into viable projects, careers and businesses. We are the go-to destination for work opportunities, event listings, arts stories and creative inspiration. The Big Idea is a not-for-profit trust started in 2001 and is New Zealand’s longest running creative sector website.