The ’Sex Fest’ Makes a Tempting Offer


EDGE Media Network Contributor

Friday June 6, 2014

In one of the short plays in "Safeword," a collection of original works by Boston-based playwrights in Heart & Dagger's "Sex Fest II," two desperately horny alpha males from UMass Lowell soak a watermelon in vodka. Then they get so trashed, and so competitive, that they're willing to mount anything, even if it's inanimate, to order to display their dominance.

In this same spirit of randy revelry, "Sex Fest II" is offering a free Melon Balla' Cocktail to audience members who attend a matinee performance of "Safeword" -- the Sex Fest shorts.

The Melon Balla' Cocktail is the signature drink of the festival, featuring high-quality, artisanal vodka, fresh fruit and all-natural ingredients. There are no artificial favors or colors in this fresh, homemade cocktail, but it is injected with a little bit of Sex Fest love. Each cocktail is topped with a squirt of Sex Nectar. Though we can't tell you what is in this proprietary essence, we will say that like the vodka it is hand-made in small batches.

The Melon Balla' Cocktail will be offered every performance of the "Safeword" shorts, but it will only be free to those who order their tickets to the performance online at least a day before the show. Otherwise you can buy it for the incredibly low price of $6 -- the Sex Fest wants to keep their audience's spirits up. To order tickets go Heart & Dagger's website and follow the link to Brown Paper Tickets. The names of people who order online will automatically be put on the list to receive a cocktail.

In addition to the unnatural desecration of fruit, there are many more hilarious and arousing scenarios that come-up in the Sex Fest shorts. A star-struck fan recognizes that his sister's new boyfriend is an adult model, a wife gives her hubby a hand with his porno hang-ups and a couple who have been actively hydrating themselves for watersports need to hold it all in, while mommy and daddy come for a visit. Crisco, cross-dressing and Star Wars sex play will all come together, (if not simultaneously.)

One particular highlight of the show is John J King's "Cocktales," a phallic coming-of-age story. In this fable the characters are gigantic, anthropomorphic genitals, and a virtuous and handsome penis proves his valor by winning the clit of a lovely (if uptight) vagina.

Longtime collaborator with King, Bridgette Hayes masterfully manipulates the audience with her unique brand of sweet-n-slutty humor. She does the same thing in Rick Park's explosive farce "Mind Your P's & Q's." Then she remarkably turns it around in a sparse, sub-textural play called "ONE." This play, as directed by Cassandra Lovering, is more or less a poem, a lesbian love song.

Grant MacDermott, star of the Huntington Theatre's "Now and Later" and the Boston cult-favorite "Cupcake," has also written a play for the Sex Fest shorts.

In his play "Fit," MacDermott addresses cross-dressing, certainly a subject that theatre audiences have seen before. But rather than the traditional interpretations of mockery or disgust, "Fit's" heart and humor comes not from the costuming but from relationship between the characters and the persistence of familial love.

The "Sex Fest II" short plays "Safeword" runs in repertory with "Jesus," a rarely produced, full-length experimental play by Charles Mee, Silvia Graziano and Lizette Morris. This play attempts to transcend both performer and text to achieve what Antonin Artaud conceived of as "magic" in his theories on a "Theatre of Cruelty."

"Jesus" is not comfortable theatre. It's not pleasant. It is theatre for the masochist and, hopefully, through pain, will bring the actor and audience together in an elevation of their collective spirit.

"Sex Fest II" is at the Factory Theatre, 791 Tremont Street, Boston, MA.

Go to

Saturday, June 7 at 4:00 and 8:00pm
Sunday, June 8, 4:00pm
Thursday, June 12, 7:30pm
Saturday, June 14, 4:00pm

Wednesday, June 11, 7:30pm
Friday, June 13, 8pm
Saturday, June 14, 8:00pm