1972: The Future of Sex
1972: The Future of Sex propels its audience backwards in a jukebox time machine to the kaleidoscopic 70s, the age of sexual awakening, second-wave feminism and David Bowie. The play is not about sex in the literal sense of the word, but instead seeks to interweave modern and retrospective attitudes of sexual politics through the eyes of the “first-time” experience.
It is a play that looks back to the past to bring to forefront a problem in the present, and it is decidedly Brechtian in its approach, suggesting a critical view of sexual culture as a whole rather than of the play itself. In the age of Internet porn and online escort services, the drama serves as a frank reminder that, no matter how much access we may have to sex, the societal attitudes towards it are ever-changing and as such is something we will never come to fully understand.
The Wardrobe Ensemble’s script is acutely articulate; its attempts to depict the very nature of sexual encounters are starkly realistic. Without straying at all into the realm of the kitchen-sink drama, the play tackles both sensitive and controversial issues by raising them in the context of relatable situations. The colourful, overhead commentary is both comedic and engaging, offering us a voyeuristic window into the minds of the first-timers, who awkwardly bumble on a journey towards their sexual destiny, combating themes of gender, inequality and identity along the way.
The minimalistic setting complements the hustle and bustle of the on-stage action, as the focus then lies on the relationships between the characters and the societal challenges which they encounter. The sexual scenes, which could have been vulgar and explicit, are instead fervently passionate and elegantly choreographed, leaving much to the audience’s imagination.
The collaborative direction Tom Brennan and Jesse Jones is fantastic and, given the dense nature of the play’s overriding philosophy, both do an excellent job of ensuring it’s accessibility for the wider audience. The jaunty humour and vibrant, vivacious performances make The Future of Sex both an enjoyable and entertaining watch. This is not one to miss.
1972: The Future of Sex is on at Shoreditch Town Hall from 12th until 23rd April, for further information or to book visit here.
Watch the trailer for the production here: