All the Dirty Details: salacious storytelling at the Montreal Smut Slam

Cameryn in Vancouver

An interview with Cameryn Moore

As adults we wistfully reminisce about slumber party spin the bottle or camp fire Never-Have-I-Ever. Rarely in our 9-to-5 lives do we indulge in the thrilling confessions of our Saturday morning walk-of-shames. But you don’t have to get nostalgic for your Phi Kappa brothers. Instead, you can find solace at the Smut Slam.

Founded by Cameryn Moore, the Montreal Smut Slam is a genre of story slam: an oral storytelling performance popularized by Homer…and, well, more recently, The Moth. The teller recounts a true-life story in under five minutes, without notes, relating to the event’s specific theme. A Smut Slam is a story slam, yes. But better. It’s specifically about sex. Where Are the Shows talked with Moore for some insight into both the exhibitionist delights and profound liberation of relating sexual escapades onstage. This Tuesday June 11 during Fringe Fest, consider putting your name in the hat for the biggest Montreal Smut Slam of the year. An evening of uncensored, unabashed, and unapologetic confessionals, you’d be ashamed to miss it.

What makes the story slam format special for the teller? the audience member? How is the experience different than other genres of performance?

Storytelling is both an ancient pastime AND everyone does it. It is very accessible to people, in terms of knowing generally how to do it. The slam format is also accessible in terms of participating: anyone could get a chance to tell, if your name is drawn from the hat. And because at Smut Slams we know that the stories are true, the listener experiences a heightened sense of suspense or thrill or sympathy. Whatever emotions the teller is tapping into with their story, the “this-really-happened-to-me” component ramps up the empathic response even higher.

Holy shit – people tell true stories about their sex lives to strangers? Why would they do that? What do the teller and the audience member get out of it?

There is the obvious exhibitionist/voyeur dynamic. Some people–I’m one of them–like talking about their sex lives; other people really like hearing about other people’s sex lives. But I think smut slam goes beyond that, precisely because we are talking about sex. The teller gets to bounce events off of other people, and get affirmation for experiences: wasn’t this scary, or hot, or embarrassing, or wild? Sometimes the teller might still be processing the event, and the act of creating and performing a story around it can help give it more shape and meaning. And the listeners, they get a whole series of windows onto other people’s lives, into other ways of being sexual. Smut Slams can be really funny, and they’re educational too!

How would you encourage someone who is interested in smut slamming, but is scared or intimidated?

Come and watch first. If you change your mind in the middle, or if you’re listening to other people’s awesome stories, and you’re like, “Wait, I have an awesome story, I could totally tell it,” well, you’re in luck, because you can add your name to the hat until the very end.

smut slam logo large

Have your smutty story ready for the Fringe festival Smut Slam

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