THE CRITICS : Perverse pleasures: a critic writes
Sunday 28 July 1996
If, instead, you get a kick from the whiff of failure or collect critical flops, this 90-minute show, produced by Michael White (who gave us Oh! Calcutta! and The Rocky Horror Show), and featuring the soft-rock lesbian band Fem 2 Fem, delivers the same sadistic pleasures as the late-lamented Fields of Ambrosia.
Sanity disappears with the last glimpse of the safety curtain, which rises to reveal dancers moving with graceful solemnity in white underpants. The audience has to make a quick interactive choice: laugh at the show or with it.
Let's call it a spoof musical (and laugh with it), a piece of dippy kitsch about a girl from Virginia, Jane (the blonde, mock-virginal Sally Anne Marsh), who goes to New York and discovers sex (or really, the sex industry). The book and lyrics, by Michael Lewis and Peter Rafelson, are as cheerfully and brazenly inane as the thumping bass line. I quote: "How are you doing? What's your name?" "Fine, thanks. I'm Jane." In the background a voice whispers: "Sex on a Train." (This exchange drew a cheer from the noisy first-night audience.)
Voyeurz offers a catch-all mixture of period sex. There's Eighties religious imagery (Madonna cast-offs) with semi-naked dancers thrusting their pelvises at scaffolding. Then there's nostalgic Sixties stuff: sitars, cornflowers, and naked dancers hymning the joys of tantric sex. In terms of outrageousness it doesn't take us much further than the tarts displaying their wares in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962). The fetishistic props - the high heels, handcuffs, whips and leather thongs - are as familiar to modern audiences as tennis rackets, cigarette boxes and French windows were to pre-war ones.
From the back of the stalls, with stage smoke, lighting and music, and a dozen dancers wiggling away, this celebration of kinkiness looked about as offensive as a seaside postcard. It would be hard to know what to praise in Voyeurz. But perversely I quite enjoyed it.
Life & Style blogs
Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
KickAssTorrents down: biggest file-sharing site moves to .cr domain after takedowns
Audrey Hepburn is officially Britain’s style icon – 22 years after her death
Protein World 'Beach body ready' advert: Mass demonstration in Hyde Park planned against 'body-shaming' weight loss advertisements
The confessions of men who ordered mail-order brides
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
EU exit would hit UK economy much harder than neighbouring countries, study finds
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
- 1 Avengers: Age of Ultron: Nearly 700 German cinemas refuse to show movie
- 2 Donald Trump decides that Baltimore riots are Barack Obama's fault
- 3 X Factor in crisis as numbers of people auditioning plummets
- 4 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
- 5 Baltimore riots: Furious mother marches her son home live on TV
£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This firm of accountants based ...
£30000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are a financial services c...
£30000 - £32000 per annum + car allowance and on call: Ashdown Group: A succes...
£15000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Well established small company ...