THE POETRY BROTHEL IS AN IMMERSIVE LITERARY CABARET THAT FUSES POETRY, BURLESQUE, LIVE MUSIC, VAUDEVILLE, VISUAL ART, MAGIC, MYSTICISM, AND PRIVATE, ONE-ON-ONE POETRY EXPERIENCES.
Inspired by the turn-of-the-century brothels in New Orleans, Paris, and Buenos Aires, many of which functioned as permissive spaces where marginalized, fringe, and avant-garde artists could experiment and perform their work, The Poetry Brothel presents a rotating cast of poets, each operating within carefully constructed characters, who share their work through staged public performances, spontaneous immersive eruptions, and, most distinctly, as purveyors of intimate poetic experiences in private spaces. Central to the experience is the creation of character, which for each artist functions as a disguise and freeing device, enabling The Poetry Brothel to be a place of uninhibited creative expression in which poets and audience members alike can communicate more authentically.
In addition to its poets, The Poetry Brothel presents artists and activists working in a variety of mediums both on stage and through its ever-changing array of intimate, interactive, and creative services. Artists performing with the Brothel are male, female, faeries, sea creatures, witches, aliens, POC, straight, queer, emerging, established, local, international, virgins, whores, and everything in between. The Poetry Brothel recognizes that not everyone can take the mask of being a “whore” off at the end of the night and therefore uses its platform to support sex workers and to teach the public that sex work is real work. Sex work and poetry are two of the oldest professions - both feed the human need for intimacy, fantasy, and desire. By entwining these elements into a seamless, immersive experience, The Poetry Brothel promotes empowered sexuality practices and progressive artistic expression by exhibiting radical inclusion, consensual intimacy, conscious communication, and the inherent value of beauty in all its forms.