PICA (for Fringe Festival)
Tuesday, January 24
There are moments in your life where you take note, and this was, without doubt, one of those occasions. I was totally unprepared for what was one of the most sensual, sexual, immersive theatre moments I will ever witness. It was phenomenal, subversive, challenging, and pushed the audience into the world of photosynthetic sexuality, the likes of which you never knew you needed. It’s symbiotically sexy. It’s every bit of erotic eco-bathhouse you didn’t know that you have always yearned for in the privacy of your wank bank, delivered in three rooms and directly into your pants.
With sessions commencing every fifteen minutes, the group was guided to the back of PICA, unsure of what laid ahead. Greeted by a welcoming, warm hostess in breast slippers, we were all assigned an ecosexual toy corresponding to our assigned sexual preference, to assist in our impending play time. My friend was gleefully bestowed with a surgeon’s mask growing grass from it, while I was handed a studded belt with a water spray, as I was deemed a squirter. Of water. For plants, of course, you dirty bugger. We were handed finger condoms for safe play with plants. The awkward giggles and uncomfortable squirming by some audience participants persisted as we were led into the bathhouse.
We were greeted by the confronting sight of a grass-covered bath, with holes allowing access, and two people fisting the soil within it. I kid you not, this pretty much sums it up in one scene. One of the performers, a “regular” of the bath house, led us to a massage table, where an audience member was lying face down on a table surrounded by mounds of rock salt that required the removal of footwear to access properly, then handed hot rocks and instructed to assist in a group massage of this stranger’s legs. Not everyone’s cup of soil, I know, and we were already awkwardly giggling as we embraced the ecosexual ethos and indulged in something beautiful, and confronting, and wondrous, concurrently.
A second room was offered to us, and as we entered, we were handed 3D glasses, which suddenly transformed the twinkling lights to tiny, glowing love hearts surrounding four poster beds covered in gauze and plant life. We were all-in at this point, and laid on a bed willingly, giggling while being watered with sprays by the roaming performers.
The third room held further marvels, not least of which was a beautiful boy lying in leaves, with stick insects perched upon him, offered up to us to share. A gorgeous woman clad in white lingerie stood in the centre of a pond nearby, surrounded by plant life. I asked to join her, rolled up my pants and was suddenly treated to a sensual arm massage as she held my gaze and murmured pretty words to me. Adjacent to the pond was a phone and a seat which bestowed upon the listener the raunchiest, brain–fertilising herbaceous phone sex, which rendered me both speechless and slack jawed.
This was honestly my favourite Fringe experience, and I can’t speak highly enough. The performers expertly, gently guide you through the experience like lube. Sure, it’s not for everyone and they hit their target market with us like a the bullseyes we are, but if this show returns, please, do as Molly would suggest and do yourself a favour.
If you’re into immersive theatre, do this. If your boundaries need a workout, do this. Plunge yourself into this erotic Eden. It’s a miracle and a triumph of the most carnal nature.