By Erin Rook, PQ Monthly
Amari Fauna has come a long way from her childhood fear of clowns. After transforming that fear into a “morbid fascination,” she made her way through circus camp and eventually became a “clown nun” on a perpetual quest for bootlegs of “Cirque du Soleil” shows.
It was while watching one of these bootlegs with friend Jack StockLynn that Fauna realized she needed to take it to the next level and become one with the circus.
“Jack and [I] were watching a really terrible Cirque du Soleil video,” Fauna says. “It used poorly-hidden cheap adult humor in a non-examined way that came across as really problematic. We thought we could do better than that in a more affordable way; thus a queer kinky circus!”
And so, Pervert the Cirque was conceived. In addition to co-founding and co-organizing the event, Fauna and StockLynn will both perform at the Sept. 29 debut show at Echo Theater in SE Portland. They will be joined by Ring Mistress Sossity Chiricuzio and other well-known performers including Ari Lee, Kyle Minstrel, Liz Floyd, Danny Moreno, Brittany Walsh, and Diana Berkowitz.
“While future shows will be more in the style of Cirque du Soleil — more storyline based — this one is being done as a tribute to the traditional one-ring circus. It will be full of varied acts: some prancing ponies, contortion, a stilt-walking seduction, a trapeze act, one act we’re calling Ring of Death,” Fauna says. “There will be a performance of cavorting cats. It’ll be a selection of great cats from across the world — lion, tiger, panther — doing what great cats would do in a circus but with a few surprises thrown in.”
Though a variety of “animals” will be featured in the show — including ponies, cats, dogs, and bears — vegans need not be concerned. No real animals are used in the show, only role-playing humans.
Those seated in the VIP section will be treated to an even fuller sensory experience. Those who pay the extra $25 will get the undivided attention of two servers who will not only bring food and drinks, but will also offer boot shines and massage. Front-row VIP seats are going for $40, while general admission is $15.
“We’ve discussed the possibility of all future shows being benefits for a different people each time,” says Fauna, a self-identified transdyke for whom the show will be a surgery benefit. “We’ve also discussed the importance of making sure all our performers and supporters are paid for their work. This debut performance will be our test run to find the balance between the two.”
Even as they prepare for their inaugural show, Fauna and StockLynn have plotted out ideas for the next six. The duo hopes to put on two or three shows each year.
“We’re looking to [do] our next performance around Valentine’s Day with a show we’re calling ‘Blood Bath,’” Fauna says.
It should perhaps go without saying that this event is 18-plus for general admission, and 21-plus for VIP. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door, however Fauna anticipates the show will sell out and encourages folks to get their tickets in advance.
“There will be a limited number of cash-only tickets available at the door, but we’re expecting tickets to sell quickly,” Fauna says, “so folks should get their tickets online if they want to be guaranteed a seat.”