Corinne Loperfido had a busy weekend when she visited Portland to host her quarterly sex-positive dance party, EveryBODY PDX: DIY Performance Art Strip Club. She was seen at numerous sex-positive events around Portland after her Friday party and returned to the road to make freaky parties happen across America.
Loperfido responded to the Portland State Vanguard‘s Q&A request via email, answering from her phone at a festival. Some answers may be edited for clarity.
Vanguard: Recurring themes across your parties seem to be sexuality, liberation, and expression. How are these themes and your parties affected in the transition from the Obama era to the Trump era?
Corinne Loperfido: These themes are only made more necessary in a Trump era. We did see some expansion of personal freedom of expression during the Obama era, and now that we have someone in office who is trying to backtrack on all that, it is important that we stay on the path of sexual liberation and continue the work that was started in the 1960s and ’70s. We are still kept very in the dark about the true powers we hold in our sexuality, and it isn’t easy living in a world where we’re told we’re not good enough, not sexy enough, our genitals aren’t the right size and that you aren’t worthy of love if you aren’t slim and trim. Now more than ever, we must embrace our uniqueness and individuality and learn to appreciate the gifts that each of us bring to the table just by being ourselves.
Vanguard: What is the #1 misconception EveryBODY deconstructs?
Loperfido: Gender. Also we aim to deconstruct what “sexy” looks like. The party used to be called Big Dick’s House of Big Boobs, but Patrick and I decided to change it to EveryBODY because we want it to be the most inclusive party of all time. Until there is space for each person to be valued and celebrated, we have not reached true liberation from body shaming and sexual oppression.
Vanguard: What does EveryBODY have in common with your other parties and what makes it unique?
Loperfido: EveryBODY is similar to my other parties in the sense that it involves a large cast of people all presenting either themselves or what they make, and it is different in the sense that it is more of a big spectacle show. All of my events are focused around the deconstruction of social norms in some capacity, and a lot of them have an educational component too.
Vanguard: What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen at one of your parties?
Loperfido: After 35 shows and upwards of 800 performances, I sometimes think I’ve seen it all, but then there are always new people (or repeat performers with new acts!) out there that continue to blow my mind. Of course I have to shout out Max Madame on here because I don’t know how many other places you can go to see a live squirting and pussy weightlifting performance in the same act. Max is not only a great performer, but they are always challenging themselves and expanding their skill set.
Besides that, I have seen multiple people staple their flesh, we had a seven month pregnant woman (who is one of our regulars!) come and perform this last time in Portland, and I have seen pretty much anything you could imagine go in or out of a pussy.
The point of the show is to create a platform for people to push the limits of what they think they’re capable of and for the audience to push the limits of what they think they’re comfortable with. Ultimately everyone has an amazing time and I think we’ve only made a couple people throw up or storm out over the years.
Vanguard: What’s something you’ve wanted to do at a party but haven’t yet done?
Loperfido: I always want there to be more interactive elements at the event! We had a peep show both made out of an old refrigerator box one time and we’ve had genital portraits in the past. I would love for more people to create some kind of one-on-one or small group interactive experiences during the event.
Vanguard: What is the selection process like for new performers? Do you accept everyone that applies?
Loperfido: Generally it is first come first served. We tend to save a few slots for some of our favorite performers, but next time [I’m in] Portland we will be doing Virgin Night, which means that each act will have to have at least one person that has never been on the stage before.
It is important to me that everyone has an opportunity to experience something like this if they so choose. Everyone has to start somewhere and some of my favorite performers (like Max!) got their start at this party and now perform for a living. If everyone only books seasoned performers, where [do] new people cut their teeth?
Vanguard: What’s the biggest change you’ve observed in your history of parties?
Loperfido: The biggest change would probably be just the refinement of the flow from a production standpoint. After 35 shows, you’d think I’d have it all figured out but moving between venues, cities, hosts, DJs, performers, and cultural movements, there’s always room to refine. The crowd is always consistently supportive and beyond enthusiastic, and there’s certainly never a shortage of people interested in getting on stage and letting it all hang out.
Vanguard: Anything else our readers should know?
Loperfido: I want readers to know that there are no limits. Anything is possible and this party is living proof of that. EveryBODY went from the seed of an idea, “I wish there was a strip club where everyone was represented on stage because every body is attractive to somebody,” into a multi city, five years (and counting!) party with a cult following. My advice to anyone who is seeking something but is unable to find it: “Build it and they will come.”