Kink as female empowerment — that’s the thinking behind the weekend’s three-day sexuality extravaganza organized by Viktoria Kalenteris, aka sex educator Lady Viktoria.
The series of workshops and parties — running Thu, May 7 to 9 — is a chance for experienced kinksters to enjoy themselves but designed so vanilla folks can also come and see what all the fuss is about.
“If there were any play party good for a first-timer, this is it,” says Kalenteris. “It will make you curious, you will ask questions, and there will be people there to answer those questions. It’s an excellent stepping stone for people who are curious about this world.
“My tag line on the [Ladyviktoria.com] site is ‘enhancing playful loving,’ so I’m giving people an opportunity to express themselves sexually in a comfortable environment in a nonthreatening way. I’m creating this for the mainstream to enter.”
Kalenteris isn’t shy about sharing her motivations for creating a weekend dedicated to celebrating women’s sexuality. At age 18 she was pressured to marry the first person she was intimate with; the marriage, says Kalenteris, quickly became abusive.
“I had a traumatic experience and there was nobody there for me. I wanted to take that energy and channel it somewhere else, to help other people who have suffered from domestic abuse,” she says. “Men and women who have been abused don’t always speak up.”
In addition to featuring events designed to encourage women to get out and play, Kinkalicious will serve as a fundraiser for the Woman Abuse Council of Toronto.
While women of all orientations are the primary focus of the event, Kalenteris says that abuse is everyone’s issue.
“I have talked to males in the gay community that have had the experience and nobody talks about that either. I once met a woman who was in an abusive relationship with another woman. It’s all around me and it’s time to put a spotlight on it.”
Kalenteris’s connections, built up over years as an educator and organizer within the Montreal and Toronto kink scenes, are evident in the weekend’s lineup. International kink and sexuality educator Midori will present three workshops, including the Art of Female Dominance. Registered nurse, midwife and holistic women’s sexuality educator Sheri Winston will also be presenting sessions, in collaboration with sex shop Good for Her and the Toronto Women’s Bookstore, including a class on maintaining healthy relationship boundaries entitled Sacred Boundaries.
“The workshops are set up for education, empowerment and confidence,” Kalenteris says.
In addition to those being held during the weekend itself Kinkalicious is sponsoring a full-day training session on “women’s realistic self-defence,” an approach that includes verbal communication tactics, conflict psychology and physical techniques, at the end of May.
“Kinkalicious is for women, and for the men and women who love and support them,” says Kalenteris. “It’s coming from a woman’s perspective in terms of making a difference, but everything I’m putting out there is for both men and women who want to make the world better.”
Each evening Kinkalicious will be offering a different party, beginning on May 7 with Fashion Interaction night at Northbound Leather, where you can have professional pictures snapped of your fine self decked out in Northbound gear. On May 8 a cabaret at Lounge M4 (2814 Lakeshore Blvd W) will feature the kinky comedic musical duo the Wet Spots as MCs and performers and Montreal’s fabulously trashy Dead Doll Dancers, as well as lap dancing and belly dance performances. On May 9 the Fantasy Ball, also at Lounge M4, will offer a night for exploring fantasies, with aphrodisiacs on offer, body painting and an exhibit of paintings by trans artist Circé and work by fetish photographer Argaive, also Montrealers.
“The events are there to celebrate sexual expression in an environment that’s very respectful and welcoming,” says Kalenteris. “We have volunteer ambassadors to welcome you, take you on a tour of the space, answer questions and help you feel comfortable if you’re new to the space.”
Both the Friday and Saturday night events will include play stations for guests, but Kalenteris says it’ll be tucked away so as not to frighten off newbies.
“I want everyone to be comfortable…. Kinky play will go on in the back; you can be in the main area and choose not to see what’s happening there.”