Once again, Thom Fitzgerald is showing Haligonians a sexy time.
The second annual Sex Festival starts today in Halifax. The festival is a month-long collection of plays, spoken-word performances, cabaret and games, all centred on sex and sexuality. When asked why he decided to start this festival, Fitzgerald simply says, “I think I woke up one day and thought, ‘I should have a sex festival’. I guess I was horny.”
It seems he’s not the only one. Many of last year’s events were sold out, including such events as an amateur pornography film festival. This year will include an event titled “Sexploitation,” with vintage ‘60s and ‘70s film shown with live musical accompaniment. Playwright Lee-Anne Poole, she of Short Skirt Butch, has also contributed to the festival, with a new play entitled Kinky Kitten Club. Fitzgerald himself will be directing a play by Bryden MacDonald, Whale Riding Weather, starring Hugo Dann, Hugh Thompson and Ryan Doucette.
Fitzgerald is known to many people outside of Halifax as a film director – The Hanging Garden, 3 Needles and The Event, to name a few – but in this town, Fitzgerald is well known for his theatrical venue, The Plutonium Playhouse, where he is artistic director. When he created the Sex Festival last year, reactions from the public were incredibly positive. And he’s learned that sex really does sell. “Last time we had great success and the only event that was not fully sold out was the one without a naked person on the poster,” he says. “So . . . asses and nipples on posters.”
When asked if he thinks that Halifax is a sex-positive city, he says that although it’s not a place where sex is visible, like in Montreal or Vegas, there’s more to sex than that. “My friend Luke says about our region, “All we had to do out here was fish, drink and fuck — and now we can’t fish.”
For more information on events, check out the Plutonium Playhouse’s website.