An insightful and hilarious new play will launch this summer in a bid to shed light on what life is really like for a UK sex worker.
'Sex is hard work' will launch in Newcastle this June, making it one of the first independently produced theatre productions to be staged indoors since March. The launch will be followed by a UK tour, including dates at Edinburgh Fringe Festival next summer.
LOR PRODUCTIONS' 'Sex is Hard Work', inspired by the book of the same name, sheds light on what life is really like for a UK sex worker - telling the story of a former Tyneside escort - with a story so outrageous that it will turn people's views on the trade forever.
The play was originally due to launch in December 2020 but was postponed due to the introduction of a second lockdown in November. The event will comply with social distancing rules, however organisers are keeping a close eye on government guidelines and may release more tickets if the Covid-19 roadmap continues as planned. Further easing of restrictions is expected to take place from the 21st June.
The play’s producers chose Tyneside's iconic Cluny 2 venue in the Ouseburn Valley for the play's debut and will perform six back to back dates from the 28th June to the 3rd July.
Free tickets are being offered to NHS staff and key workers for the final show taking place on Saturday 3rd July.
Brought to life by Alison Stanley, serial North East playwright, actress and Writer of the Year finalist at the 2018 Culture Awards, this new hard-hitting and deliciously dark play will reveal the hidden world of prostitution, as seen through eyes through its lead character.
Commenting on the new play, co-founder of LOR PRODUCTIONS and the Life of Reilly theatre production company, Alison Stanley said: “What impressed me most about the person that inspired this is that she most definitely isn't what you'd expect a stereotypical sex worker to be like. She's not the drug addict or the lonely misguided person that has been taken advantage of by the pimp that we hear about in Netflix documentaries. She's a straight-talking businesswoman who saw an opportunity and used it to her advantage.
“The play is empowering women. As an occupation, it isn’t often associated with ‘girl power’. We’re not condoning prostitution, but we want to highlight that male customers don’t necessarily hold all of the control.”
“She simply went into the industry for the money with a business head on her shoulders and I think that’s very refreshing. She decided that was what she was going to do rather than sit in a call centre.
“Some of the stories and her experiences will have people’s bellies aching with laughter.”
Alison Stanley, who has previously written and performed in two sell-out plays at Edinburgh Fringe (Bedsocks and Secrets in 2016 and Life of Reilly in 2019), says she is looking forward to the her company's revised plans for Sex is Hard Work.
The play will follow snippets of the escort's unique life as a sex worker and will be filled with personal memoires, revealing the weird and wonderful requests customers placed upon her. It will also give the audience a glimpse into parts of the sex industry that is rarely seen on stage or screen.
Speaking about what the audience can expect, Alison continues: “When the audience goes in, there will be the black backdrop and the neon pink sign that says ‘SEX’ and we’ll have a soundtrack with classic female empowerment songs like ‘Lady Marmalade’.
“All these expectations of a show that starts out pretty raunchy will be turned on their head. We’re flipping the narrative and the audience’s expectations of what they think goes on in the sex industry and showing what actually does go on. It's going to be very different from what people think.
“This is her choice and women have a choice and do what they want. It might not be the best choice for every girl in the world, but this is her choice. She’s in control, not the men.
Sex is Hard Work will show the behind the scenes life of sex workers in the UK and will offer a glimpse into the perverseness of human nature coupled with the sadness that can often come with this controversial way of living.
Alison Stanley adds: “After the play’s UK tour we will be taking a trimmed down version of the production on the festival circuit.
“We're going to lure the audience into a false sense of security and make them think they know what’s coming. The poster design and the title of the play will jump out of the Fringe programme.”
“Like with everything we do, we will be providing opportunities for autistic people to work in the crew and production team for the play,” Stanley continues.
Sex is Hard Work will take place from the 28th June to the 3rd July at Cluny 2 in Newcastle. Tickets will be priced at £10.00 per show, plus the normal booking fees, and are available via TicketWeb: https://bit.ly/2GL9u11
Tickets for the NHS and key workers are free and limited to four per person.