Announcing the Finalists for the 24th Sexual Freedom Awards!
The 24th Sexual Freedom Awards – honouring practitioners, performers and activists who promote sexually positive attitudes – will be held in London, UK on Thursday 15th November 2018. These uniquely independent and inclusive international Awards – with their famous, hand-carved, 'flying cock' trophy – are presented in nine categories; Activist, Ally, Event, Pioneer, Publicist, Sex Worker and Somatic Sex Educator of the Year; plus Performer and Stripper of the Year which are chosen from the live acts taking place during the Awards ceremony itself.
A long-list for each Award category is compiled from nominations made during the previous year, then a short-list is selected by a panel of expert judges, who announce their choice of winners on the night. We salute all of the nominees. The finalists will remain featured here to reflect their outstanding contributions to the myriad worlds of sexual freedom and expression. Nominations for the 2019 Sexual Freedom Awards will be open soon after. The 2018 finalists may be viewed below.
Activist of the Year
Aderonke Apata - WINNER!
Aderonke Apata is a Human Rights Activist, Feminist and LGBT Equality Advocate who has a BSc in Microbiology, a Master of Public Health and Primary Care and currently studying a Postgraduate course, Graduate Diploma in Law. She's an LGBTI asylum campaigner for LGBTI people seeking asylum to stay in the UK; whom herself got granted asylum after 13-year battle. She was named LGBT Heroine of the year 2015 by DIVA Magazine in recognition of her achievements in the LGBT community. Aderonke is the founder of African Rainbow Family, an LGBT group that supports LGBTIQ asylum seekers and people of African heritage in UK and campaigning for the Repeal of the toxic Nigerian Anti-LGBTIQ Law.
Aderonke started the Shut Down Yarl's Wood Campaign in 2012 from inside the detention centre, where she organised and led a demonstration demanding freedom for all. She galvanized and widened her reach to nearly 300 women of all nationalities, religious & cultural backgrounds fighting for their freedom. She stood up proudly and defiantly for her right to be free and for the right of ALL women to equality and freedom. Following her release from detention in 2013, Aderonke started Manchester Migrant Solidarity, a self help group offering practical supports and building a powerful political voice against the systematic mistreatment of migrants in the UK and continues to campaign for the shutdown of all detention centres.
Subsequently, Aderonke was appointed a Patron of Proud2BeProject in Totnes that support LGBT+ people. As part of Aderonke's commitment to challenge issues facing minorities and internalising the space and gap in services available for LGBTIQ people seeking asylum experiencing domestic violence, she was appointed a Trustee Board member of Broken Rainbow UK the domestic violence charity, ReachOUT Leeds, a charity that supports LGBT Refugees and people seeking asylum and LGBT Foundation.
Aderonke's fight against barriers for equal access to the political system, her ongoing campaign for equality has been recognised when she was elected as the BAME Officer, National LGBT Labour in 2014 to call upon all black Asian, and minority ethic (BAME) LGBTs in the UK to raise their voices and demand accountability of politicians. @rock4_ronnie
Activism has been my route to understanding who I am; joining ACT UP London three years ago gave me access to history, culture and people that I recognized in myself, and a space that was supportive and nurturing enough for me to come out as Queer. Before long, I had started campaigning with ‘LGBT+ Against Islamophobia’, migrant and refugee groups, and speaking out in support of PrEP with iwantprepnow.co.uk, whilst using my love of performing arts to create political, theatrical activism.
Eighteen months ago, I started living as a non-binary person, and I regularly speak on panels and contribute to publications offering a trans perspective on different issues; I use my body as a tool of activism to fight for trans rights and heighten positive visibility, and have lived each day openly and proudly, baring my scars freely. Over the last year I have been supporting the creation of a new London LGBTQ+ Community Centre, whilst sharing my native-Londoner knowledge through Queer Tours of London. I have just been chosen by the Arcola Theatre’s Queer Collective to lead a project marking fifty years since the Stonewall Riots, and look forward to a 2019 packed with even more fierce and proud rabble rousing.
Morgan Lev Edward Holleb
Morgan Lev Edward Holleb is a bisexual, non-binary Jewish anarchist author, artist, and activist. He is the founder and main organizer of Not Your Fault: a peer-led support group for men and non-binary people who have experienced sexual violence, and anyone else who can't access other support. The group fosters solidarity and gives us space to discuss the complicated aspects of our genders, sexualities, and survivorhoods. It’s currently the only sexual violence support service for men and non-binary people in Scotland, and only one of two in the UK (the other is in Leeds).
In the past year, Morgan has been an unapologetic beacon of visible transness across UK activist scenes. In December 2017 Not Your Fault started hosting meetings online in addition to the fortnightly in-person meetings. In 2018, Morgan ran workshops on consent and accountability, information security for sex workers, “how to transition and alienate people”, and prison abolition. He just finished his first book, The A–Z of Gender and Sexuality, which contrasts with other LGBT+ glossaries by delving deeper into queer history and being explicitly political (to be published summer 2019). Morgan also released two collaborative CDs of spooky cello and one solo cassette about transness and trauma this year to fundraise for Action For Trans Health, Housing Action for Southwark & Lambeth, and Not Your Fault. And along with other survivors, Morgan organized a gig to de-platform rapists and challenge abuse in the music scene.
Along with running Not Your Fault, Morgan works full-time as an advocate for queer healthcare across the 22 health boards of NHS Scotland, with particular focus on trans healthcare, sexual health, the mental health of queer youth, and end of life care. @morganholleb @NotYourFault_
Ally of the Year
The Erotic Heritage Museum
The Harry Mohney Erotic Museum, also known as the Erotic Heritage Museum, (the EHM) began as a partnership between Preacher (the Rev. Ted McIlvenna) and a Pornographer (Harry Mohney). Working to build a sex positive exhibition space, these two men from opposite sides of the cultural spectrum created the largest museum in the world for the preservation of erotic artifacts, fine art, film, education and cultural events: The Las Vegas Erotic Heritage Museum.
The EHM houses more than 24,000 square feet of permanent and featured exhibits championing the wonders of erotic imagination, as depicted through artistic expressions of sex and love. The museum’s ethos is that sexual pleasure and its depiction are natural aspects of the human experience and that such celebrations of individual human sexuality (i.e. pleasure) must be made available to all, regardless of gender, race or belief.
With so much of global erotic heritage undervalued, criticized or even lost over time the EHM is dedicated to the preservation of as much erotic heritage as is possible to display. Scouring the world for their exhibitions, The Harry Mohney Erotic Museum’s furthers its purpose by providing space for scientific and literary functions relating to sexual, emotional, mental and physical health.As such, the EHM is as much an assemblage of some of the most important sexual artifacts, tableau and interactive exhibitions in the world as it is a one-of- a-kind lecture and classroom space.
My name is Victoria Hartmann and I am the Executive Director of the Museum since 2014, having started my work at the Museum in late 2009 as a student intern. I hold an MBA as well as an MPH (Masters in Public Health) and 2 Doctorate degrees; Human Sexuality and Clinical Sexology.
Open Barbers - WINNER!
Founded in 2011 as a pop up event, Open Barbers is a hairdressing service welcoming people of all/no genders and sexualities, with any hair length and type. The team specialise in friendly, attentive and personalised services, and have lots of experience cutting hair free from stereotypes. Traditional salons and barbershops can generate various anxieties and challenges around gender, sexuality, profession and mental health (to name a few). Open Barbers work in client centred ways with the aim of responding to every individual with the utmost respect and validation. The salon also functions as a community space with free wifi, refreshments and a ‘zine library. The shop hosts a range of collaborators including massage, therapy and support groups. http://openbarbers.com/
The Raze Collective
The Raze Collective is a charity that supports queer performers and performance through events, workshops, artist development and commissioning new work.
We were founded in 2015 in response to the large number of queer venues closing (being razed) to bring people together and develop new performance opportunities. Since then, we have established our quarterly Queer Performers Network meetups and produced events showcasing the best of queer talent with the Southbank Centre and Sink the Pink. Our first set of new commissions for queer artists will be launched soon!
Find out more at www.razecollective.com
Event of the Year
The Catwalk for Power, Resistance and Hope - WINNER!
Women living with HIV who were involved with the Catwalk for Power, Resistance and Hope project stood publicly, for the first time, on a stage in the heart of Brixton, and then in Amsterdam, to honour their individual journeys. It was a profoundly powerful, jubilant, raw, creative, and emotional event to celebrate sexual freedom.
A #Catwalk4Power participant explained the power of the project, with this insight:
“After diagnosis, I lost all my confidence. Taking a position as one of the organisers of the Catwalk4Power with other women, making decisions, brainstorming, organising workshops, practising the catwalk...we reminded ourselves that WE ARE HERE. We built back our self-esteem and focussed on how our lives could be better. I now know and feel that we each have the power within ourselves and the power of community: a sustainable network of women supporting each other. I deserve to be here and be happy. I AM TRUELY HERE.”
Liquid Love with Eyal Shaphyr
The act of groups of people pouring warm oil on themselves has existed for a number of decades, and is rumoured to have started in, obviously, SF in the 60s. This was carried on in various alternative lifestyle groups, including Berlin-based communities. The Barcelona group Touch & Play then began moulding the activity into more guided sessions, which is when Eyal encountered the experience. Eyal has refined the sessions and has started spreading the word of warm oil as pathway to connection and exploration. Eyal has given Liquid Love a permanent UK Home, and has been hosting sessions open to people of all flavours, orientations, identities, genders, and sexualities. Eyal has launched the first ever Liquid Love sessions in Zurich, Paris, Lyon, Bristol, London, Tokyo, Cluj, with many more countries and cities planned for the year ahead.
Participants have said “For someone who has never got naked in front of more than 1 person I came feeling a tad apprehensive(!) but the way you spoke at the beginning in such a loving and kind and empowering way really helped me to feel comfortable enough to step into the experience and engage with it fully knowing I/we were in safe hands. It was in many ways quite an emotional/spiritual and healing experience for me as well as a sensual/sexual and loving one.“
“I think that might be the most fun I've ever had as an 'adult'!”
Red Rash Inn
The Red Rash is a creative collective of artists and performers. Since its inception in 2012 the Red Rash has been a platform for all people to express their sexuality through performance and immersive theatre. We challenge our audience’s perspective of gender and sexuality using cabaret, drag and sideshow. The collective has grown to a 100+ members and our doors are always open to more.
It is important to us that marginalized people are able to express their sexual ideas creativity. Our community of sex workers, queer and beautiful friends has come together over the years and made us into a one huge family. Our journey has taken us to events and festivals across the world; Glastonbury, Boomtown and recently Tribal Gathering in Panama to name a few. In the summer of 2018 we presented our biggest show to date.
With our late-night cabaret, human zoo red light district and LGTB disco we hope to inspire people to find their inner sexual beings.
The Red Rash Inn is place of freedom and fun, a place where you can run to, a home for everyone. www.theredrashinn.co.uk
Performer of the Year
Fran Bushe - Ad Libido - WINNER!
Fran is an award winning performer, playwright and comedian. Her work has been performed at The Soho Theatre , The Roundhouse and she has been resident artist at Pleasance Theatre, Arts Depot and Theatre Deli.
Fran’s solo show Ad Libido, was selected for the prestigious Litmus Fest at Pleasance Theatre . It then had a highly successful run at VAULT Festival ( “Relentlessly hilarious” ★★★★ The Stage, “Hilarious and heartbreaking in equal measure” ★★★★ Upper Circle, “ superb...didactic, thought provokig” ★★★★★ Arthur’s Seat ) and a sold out run in Edinburgh ( ★★★★ The Guardian, one of The Guardian’s top shows to see at the Edinburgh Fringe ).
Her work tackles and deconstructs taboos surrounding painful sex, low arousal levels and difficulty achieving orgasm. After trying and failing to enjoy sex for 15 years, unhelpful advice from GPs, unsupportive partners, feeling sexually broken and invisible she created her show Ad Libido . Fran has worked with sexual health charities Brook and Sexpression:UK and created the “Dear 16 year old me” campaign, where audiences respond to the show, sharing something they wish they had known about sex at 16. Fran’s aims to make people feel less alone and destigmatise talking about sexual welfare through laughter and community.
HP Loveshaft is a drag king astrophysicist from Los Angeles, California. Since founding queer cabaret Pangaea in 2012, this debonair dandy has danced his way into the hearts of audiences around the globe.
A soviet Jew, this trans-atlantic transexual is currently in the middle of relocating to Berlin with hopes of serving as a bridge between vulnerable queers world-wide.
Part leather daddy, part cartoon character, this lipstick thespian will charm you with his energetic dance moves & quirky humour. Having recently turned 30, he is celebrating with a drag tour.
Follow him on instagram.com/h.p.loveshaft for all manner of drag adventures!
Gypsy ‘Fur Coat Nae Knickers’ Charms “one of the original pioneers of the burlesque revival in Scotland“ (The List) lost her clothes and found herself when she stripped for the first time two decades ago… she has been striptease-ing, high-kicking and burlesque-ing ever since. An eclectic performer with a wide range of interests, she has cancan-ed in the British Library, stripteased on Italian TV, MC’d fetish events and peeled in the National Museum of Scotland. Her passion for peeling led her to teach others and she co-founded the Academy of Burlesque & Cabaret. Gypsy has taught cabaret, burlesque and striptease workshops across Europe as well as regular classes with the National Dance Agency since 2005.
In 2001, having spent a few years stripping in the pub and club circuit, Gypsy undertook a PhD in Sociology looking at stripping in a club-based context in Scotland (The Private, The Public & The Pubic). Her research forms the basis of the Illicit Thrill, a show dedicated to strip clubs and strip club culture. Running at the Edinburgh Fringe since 2014, this show aims to introduce audiences to strip clubs and strip club culture from the perspective of those who work in the industry. The show also seeks to raise awareness of issues facing the industry today.
Pioneer of the Year
I began writing and performing immersive, intimate and positive erotic audio in 2014, having discovered it while looking for an alternative to soulless porn. I fell in love with the genre, and knew that this new format would help people feel more like participants than mere observers, that it could provide much needed comfort along with sexual satisfaction.
My audios focus on a holistic approach to healthy sexuality, including passionate, primal sex, afterglow and connection, humour and playfulness, affection and friendship, support and comfort. In fact, I chose the name Eve’s Garden not because of the concept of sin, but rather because Eden was a place where the first humans felt no guilt or shame over nudity or sex.
I created my site Eraudica.com to be a haven of positivity and pleasure for men in particular, although I'm pleased to count many women among my listeners as well. I've been so fortunate to reach many thousands of people this way, and to help spread the idea of sexuality as a normal and healthy part of life. I sincerely love what I do, and have more ideas than I have hours in the day. I can't wait to explore them all.
Mollena Williams-Haas - WINNER!
An Award-Winning, internationally acclaimed writer, actor, BDSM Educator, Storyteller, anti-bigotry activist and filmmaker, Mollena is the submissive partner in a consensual Power Exchange relationship with renowned contemporary composer Georg Friedrich Haas. She serves as his beloved slave, wife, artistic collaborator and Muse. In February 2016, the New York Times published a groundbreaking piece about their BDSM relationship. They successfully debuted their first collaborative piece, “HYENA” written and performed by Mollena with music by Professor Haas, in Vienna, Austria in 2016. Their relationship is the subject of “The Artist And The Pervert” and they are collaborating on an opera and two sequels to “HYENA.”
She has been a lecturer and presenter on topics of kink, BDSM and Power Exchange, frequently delving deeply into hw these intersect with race in general and Black feminism in particular. Since 1998. Her opinion on issues of kink and BDSM are frequently sought after by news and information sources like NY Times, Huffington Post,Newsweek, Essence,and Ebony, among other publications. She is a frequent guest expert on Dan Savage’s “Savage Lovecast,” a repeat guest on Tristan Taormino’s “Sex Out Loud,” and appeared on Margaret Cho’s “Monsters of Talk.” She is the author of the “Toybag Guide: Taboo Play. co-author of “Playing Well With Others: Your Guide to Discovering, Exploring and Navigating the Kink, Leather and BDSM Communities” which is the “go-to guide” for those curious about Alternative Lifestyles. She has been sober since March 14, 2007.
Publicist of the Year
Erika Moen - JOINT WINNER!
Erika Moen is the co-writer and artist behind the comic Oh Joy Sex Toy, alongside her husband Matthew Nolan. She has been doing webcomics since she was 15 years old and has been a full-time, professional cartoonist and comic book creator at Helioscope Studio in Portland, OR since she was 25.
She is a cisgender, white, able-bodied, queer lady who was born June, 1983. Her work has been published by Dark Horse Comics, Image Comics, Villard, BOOM! Studios, Penny Arcade and Scholastic, among others. Read more at erikamoen.com
Juno Roche - JOINT WINNER!
Juno Roche is a writer, talker and thinker whose work is centred around gender, sex, sexuality and proud trans presences; trans bodies, trans journeys and trans desires.
Juno’s first, 2018 book Queer Sex: A Trans and Non-Binary Guide to Intimacy, Pleasure and Relationships was described by Bitch Magazine as “simply phenomenal”.
Juno’s next book is out mid-2019.
Miss Eve E
Eve is a queer disabled British freelancer, writer, sex worker, and sex educator. Through her personal blog MissEveE.com, Eve is determined to make the public aware that disabled people enjoy sex too.
MissEveE.com covers many topics ranging from general sex ed, sex and accessibility, to being a disabled sex worker in the adult industry. She also enjoys picking apart sex toys to look at just how accessible (or usually how inaccessible), they are to show that accessibility doesn't just stop at outdoor ramps. Eve is also a regular contributor for Liability Magazine and writes about various topics from self care, and mental health to sex toys, and sexuality.
Along with her partner, affectionately known as ‘The Gent’, together they run Parlour Talk. The Parlour Talk website dedicated to starting a conversation, on topics surrounding sex work, sexuality, periods, chronic illness, disability, gender and more. Parlour Talk also runs a shop where all red umbrella merchandise profits are split between non-Nordic model sex worker positive organisations.
Eve is in the process of two new side projects, both with the aim of supporting her fellow sex workers and improving the conversation surrounding sexuality and disability.
Sex Worker of the Year
I am Charlotte 34yrs old. I have been in the sex industry for 5 years and absolutely love what I do.
I first got into swinging with my partner and because of the fun we had, I decided to become an escort. It’s more about meeting new people and sharing experiences than the money side of things. I have met soo many people that I’ve helped to develop their sexual experiences and allowed them to try new things that they wouldn’t do in a normal relationship.
Most men that I have seen for a period of time now have the confidence that they once didn’t have. Also it’s more about the friendship and bond between myself and the guy. I don’t class myself as a prostitute but a friend and companion who is there for a shoulder to cry on and to pass on help to those that need it.
Liara Roux is a sex worker, porn producer, political organizer, and an advocate for decriminalization and protection of consensual adult activity. They are perhaps best known as an internationally touring escort. As a genderqueer provider, Liara takes particular joy and care in working with clients exploring their own gender - as documented in Vice's Queerly Beloved podcast.
They have been interviewed or featured in publications such as Vice, Wired, Playboy, Hustler, Washington Post, Buzzfeed News, and BBC Technology and on blogs such as Reason, The Daily Dot, and ErosBlog. They've written as Liara for XBiz, Motherboard, Broadly, and Tits and Sass, had films screened at SXSW and Berlin Porn Film Festival panels, and images shown in the Berlin Festival exhibition.
Liara's political organizing included penning an Open Letter to Patreon to advocate for vulnerable creators on the online funding platform, documenting the impact of the United States' FOSTA/SESTA bill, direct political lobbying on sex work issues, and organizing online events such as a massive Reddit AMA.
Madame Caramel - WINNER!
On the 8th February 2002 Wesa G left her home country Angola, arriving at Stansted Airport with baby in arms, £200 in her pocket and very few words of English. 16 years later we know Wesa as Madame Caramel an accomplished business woman, world renowned professional dominatrix and ambassador for the Femdom and BDSM scene.
Madame Caramel is the owner of the Hoxton Dungeon Suite, a first class BDSM apartment close to the City of London. Along with bedroom, bathroom and kitchen facilities, HDS boasts two incredible playspaces equipped with the best BDSM furniture and toys available. The apartment is a kinky haven created with kinky couples in mind, and is adored both for its comforts and exciting possibilities for play.
The now famous annual FemDom Ball in London was founded in 2015, an event that attracts professional and lifestyle dominant women from all over the world, some flying as far as Dallas Texas. Madame Caramel wanted to create an elegant gala event with a strict dress code to make it really special. The Femdom Ball is a celebration of a sisterhood where women can meet and network with their comrades who they interact with daily online but rarely meet face to face. Madame Caramel also runs a regular Club BlackWhip, an event that welcomes all dominant women with an interactive format that is truly a submissive male’s sweetest nightmare.
The Femdom lifestyle is lived 24/7 in Madame Caramel’s household. An advocate for Female Led Relationships; her primary slave is Joris followed by her stable of well trained slaves, submissive and delightful sissy maids. Along with professional domination, Madame Caramel is a passionate Femdom Educator and Mentor. She says “I love to share my experience with all who want to learn and take great satisfaction in helping people achieve their secret (and not so secret) desires.”
Madame Caramel spends her time equally between London and the Middle East and travels regularly to other European destinations enjoying quality time with devoted slaves in many cities.
Somatic Sexologist of the Year
Gayatri is a sexuality professional devoted to bringing 21st century consciousness to ancient wisdom and practices. Since 2012, she has been offering safe and sacred spaces for people to discover the aliveness of their being through conscious touch and erotic awakening.
In a world where sex has become a commodity to promote, seduce and sell, Gayatri is passionate about positioning sexuality back in the body. Known for her refreshingly natural and joyful approach, she champions touch as the language to heal the separation between sex and spirit, heart and mind.
In 2016 Gayatri founded Tantra Massage Training with the intention of offering a heart-centred and body-celebrating approach to spiritual awareness and sexual expansion. She has initiated hundreds of people into the art of Tantric touch through workshops, and created an inspired community of sensual enthusiasts. Central to her work is grounding in safety, cultivating sensitivity, and embodying the sacred.
“It is one of the beautiful paradoxes of life that the more safe and secure you feel, the more you can liberate yourself into let-go”
Gayatri lives in the beautiful countryside of North Somerset with her beloved sister Bayari and divine dog Puma. She delights in having her head in the Heavens and feet planted firmly on the Earth.
Harmony Bonobo Woodland
I am a queer artist/activist and Certified Sexological Bodyworker. I am passionate about sexuality, playfulness, creativity and Bonobo culture. Play is a process that helps us relate to the world in a way that doesn’t involve stress. If we use our creativity we can confront things that are challenging, gently test boundaries and discover new realms of possibility.
I am currently Studying a Master Degree at Central St. Martins, where I am researching the effect of Bonobo behaviour on Humans. Bonobos use sex as a way to defuse aggression and subvert dangerous emotions like anger before it turns to rage, bringing harmony to their tribe. The introduction of Bonobo behaviour to Humans has shown promising results.
I founded The Bonobo Experience© to enable this work, the workshops and retreats go deep into the loving world of the Bonobo and show Humans alternative ways to be with one another. Our aim is to raise the profile of our closest relative, teach people the bonobo way of living and fund the adoption programme at Lola Ya Bonobo Sanctuary in the Congo.
They teach us and we help them.
If you want to know more about retreats or would like to get involved please do ask, or contact me at Bonobohouse.org
Tami Kent - WINNER!
Tami Lynn Kent, MSPT, is the founder of Holistic Pelvic Care for women and author of Wild Feminine: Finding Power, Spirit & Joy in the Female Body; Mothering From Your Center, and Wild Creative. Tami has been providing pioneering pelvic care to thousands of women in her clinic for the past 20 years.
Tami has distilled her experience and knowledge into an international training program for health care practitioners which empowers practitioners to find new ways to support pelvic healing. “Tami has pioneered a holistic approach to pelvic care that arises from her ability to listen respectfully and work authentically with the women she serves. Using a gentle intervaginal massage technique combined with restorative breathwork tools, Tami realigns your pelvis physically and energetically. This process, for all stages of a woman’s life, enhances the flow of pelvic organ energy and restores your pelvic bowl as the creative centre of your female body.”
Tami's TED Talk The Vagina Whisperer has brought somatic care to the mainstream. She eloquently describes the beauty and healing potential of somatic work and its ability to enable freedom from shame. Tami's commitment to trauma work has saved lives and she is an inspiration to many other pelvic and somatic practitioners.
Tami is a mother to three beautiful sons. She is passionate about teaching ways to cultivate the creative energy meant to flow through all aspects of one’s life and to access this beauty and wildness within. Find out more at www.wildfeminine.com.
Stripper of the Year
Bunni Morretto is cited as the Twerk Extraordinaire, she’s the assel twirling Burlesque Artist, actress & Founder-CEO of ‘Werk Out Twerk Out’ where she teaches body confidence Twerk Classes & Twerkshops. She most recently joined the cast of Hive City Legacy at The Roundhouse, an unapologetic genre defying experience which explored what it means to be a woman of colour today. A collaboration with Hot Brown Honey.
Bringing bashment to the burlesque scene whilst blending her unique style of film mash ups, clever use of cultural references, burlesque & Twerk with flawless comic timing; Bunni Morretto brings ultimate entertainment. By introducing her Jamaican heritage to the mainstream burlesque scene with pride. Her burlesque acts diversely range from brilliant satire to contrasting traditional strip tease.
Since making her burlesque debut in November 2017, she has conquered some of London's most renowned stages, including The Roundhouse, The Underbelly Festival, The Cocoa butter Club, Sink the Pink, The Vaults, Soho House.
Bunni placed 2nd runner-up in the 2018 final of Miss Burlesque UK, making history as the first black finalist in the competition.
Bunni's aim through her work both as a performer and instructor is to create a safe space for all to embrace their jiggly bits. She promotes body confidence and empowers women of all ethnicities & booty-shapes to not be limited by societal views on sexuality "as sexy takes many different forms". By learning to embrace herself through burlesque , twerk and striptease she hopes that others may also be inspired to do the same using whatever medium they wish. "There is no one way to self expression. Most people think you need a big butt to be able to Twerk but that's simply not true.
Bunni will teach you how to shake what your mumma gave ya! & show you that no matter the size #AllBootiesMatter
Joana Nastari - WINNER!
Joana Nastari is an award-winning writer, performer, activist and community organiser. She makes bombastic, poetic, political theatre shows about Stripping, Psychedelic drugs and Matriarchal Brazilian Families.
Joana has had her work developed and performed at Soho Theatre, Southwark Platform, The Vaults, Edinburgh Fringe and Lyric Hammersmith. Her debut theatre show Fuck You Pay Me, about navigating internalised shame, family tensions, club closures and the politics of working as a stripper in London, brought sex-work-stigma into the mainstream media this year after sell-out runs in London and Edinburgh.
Joana is passionate about platforming sex workers’ stories which transcend the happy hooker / tragedy porn binary. She’s creating spaces for sex workers and allies to get together with queer cabaret party Brazilian Wax and for sex workers to share skills, stories and secrets at closed community event Sleazy Virtue.
Joana’s mission is to celebrate sex workers, bring people together, create rooted communities and wage war on the stigma that is ruining and ending the lives of sex workers the world over.
Her dream is to write a warm, hilarious and human piece of TV, which has every Nan in the nation on board with the Sex Worker rights advocacy agenda.
Having been in the industry for many years, Kerry Gold is a guru of erotic entertainment. She has performed her shows worldwide, corrupting innocent people wherever she went. Kerry started her career as professional dancer but she realised very quickly that is was more profitable and much more fun to dance with her clothes off than on.
Kerry now runs her own Showgirl & Burlesque troupe ‘The Diamonte Dolls’. They have performed in some some incredible venues including cruise ships and many TV shows including hired by Britain's Got Talent, Saturday Night Takeaway, Big Brother and TOWIE.
2 years ago Kerry decided to learn to pole dance. It was a skill she’d never learnt and was surprised at just how physically demanding and painful it was. However within a short time Kerry went on to win many competitions, including placing 3rd in the European Championships and went on to compete in the World Championships earlier this year.
She is incredibly honoured to have been nominated for this prestigious award and is looking forward to performing and being part of this amazing event.
Lifetime Achievement Awards
These are discretionary awards given by the Judging Panel for long-standing dedication to sexual freedom, exploration and expression.
Dominic Davies has been a pioneer in the field of sexuality for over 35 years as a psychotherapist and sexologist. In the late 80's he trained 'buddies' to support people with HIV/AIDS across Merseyside & Manchester and ran Eroticising Safer Sex workshops in pubs in Liverpool.
Dominic was the co-editor a trilogy British textbooks in working with LGBT people (in 1996 and 2000). In 1996 he also co-authored a book on the sexual experiences of people with disabilities. In 1999 he founded Pink Therapy whose Directory of Pink Therapists is the go-to resource for finding non-pathologising sex-positive therapists around the UK.
The training courses he has conceived and promoted have changed the face of British therapy for queer people and those with diverse lifestyles and relationships (asexual, kinky and poly folk). Recent Annual International Pink Therapy Conferences topics have includedKInk & BDSM; Sex Works! Exploring the Intersection of Sex Work and Mental Health Professionals aimed at improving mental health support available for people who sell sex and helping talk-therapists know more about the ethical practice of various kinds of somatic sexology. Pink Therapy's next Conference in March 2019 will be on Intersectionality. firstname.lastname@example.org
Previous Lifetime Acheivement awardees have included:
Derek Jarman – Anthony Grey (leading English lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights activist) – Deborah Ryder (writer of erotic fiction representing female masochism) – Kathy Acker (author) – Berth Milton (photographer & founder of Private in 1965) – Charles Gatewood (photographer) – Betty Dodson (author, artist & educator) – William Levy (founder of Suck & International Times) – Irena Ionesco (photographer) – Derek Cohen (founder of SM Gays in 1981) – Jo King (founder of the London School of Stripping) – Sir Guy of The Tawsingham Community and The Other Pony Club – William Margold (porn actor, director and activist) – Dian Hanson (publisher) – Dolores French (author of Working: My Life as a Prostitute) – Empress Stah (Aerial Artist, Cabaret Theatre Performer, Show Producer) – Barbara Carrellas (author of the the world’s first LGBTQ and kink inclusive Tantric sex book, Urban Tantra) – Joseph Kramer (pioneering founder of The Body Electric School, EroSpirit & Sexological Bodywork) – Kenneth Ray Stubbs (quadriplegic sexual shaman & originator of modern tantric massage) – Crossbones (John Constable).