And yes, you do have to summon the Sexy Ghost Boy. The instructions will let you know what to do and don’t worry, there are easy opt out signs you can do if you don’t want to be a part of something. Luckily, this audience was ready to get involved. We made guttural noises, drew pictures, wiped things clean, sprayed water, became fire, doused fire, were titillated and teased, all at the behest of Fenn’s spectre.
The show plays out like an elongated game of Charades except without the tediousness and erratic family members. Fenn never speaks out loud, just gestures with hands and eye contact to get us to do something. Squawks, gasps, sighs and breaths make the show quiet but not silent. Sexy music plays during different parts to ensure we don’t begin to feel uncomfortable with elongated periods of audible stillness.
There is an element of parody in what is considered sexy in a mainstream sense but Fenn goes further. As he pokes fun at the visual cues of “sexiness”, he incorporates what a more intimate sexual connection is like, engaging all the senses of touch, smell, hear, and taste to accompany what we usually just see on billboards and adverts on television. It reminds me of Peter Strickland’s amazing film, The Duke of Burgundy, in which they credit their perfumier at the beginning as a cue that the audience should imagine scents wafting through each scene. At Sexy Ghost Boy we get the full 3D version. It’s very exciting.
Fenn bobs from bit to bit like ectoplasm, manifesting in one way then disappearing and reappearing in a new form. He is a compelling actor, we miss him for the short amounts of time he is off stage and I can’t stop staring as he saunters around our summoning circle. There is a zinging thrill of being outside my comfort zone as he bids me to play with his hair or get spritzed with water. I could use so many sexual innuendos here, but this is a non-verbal show, so I won’t.
The end comes and it is unexpected and without any real conclusion. As if the veil between our world and the next has suddenly been extinguished, our séance has ended and it is time to head back into the mortal realm. My friend and I are not ready for that yet so we go to a bar instead. We can’t stop smiling and discuss Sexy Ghost Boy in length. Things we figured out, things we hadn’t. How weird it was, how unique. The what’s and how’s and huh’s we still had, but we both feel so… I don’t even know how to describe it. I feel like I’m floating while simultaneously feeling grounded, I’m ecstatic while also very chill. Maybe it’s the full moon, or maybe I’m just a little bit possessed by the Sexy Ghost Boy.
Sexy Ghost Boy is playing the The Scruffy Bunny Theatre until Saturday the 23rd of March. You can find tickets here.