Sex Education Xplorers (S.E.X.) @ Summerhall

Biology, bodies, gender expression and sex – packing this much information and discourse into an entertaining hour is an extraordinary feat

Review by Dominic Corr | 24 Aug 2021
  • Sex Education Xplorers @ Summerhall

Even going to school in the early 2000s, sex education left a lot to be desired. It divided us between those who identified as boys and as girls, and left us with barely any more information than we had when we went in. On reflection, something needs to change – though perhaps Mamoru Iriguchi, writer and performer of Sex Education Xplorers, should sit out the Education Board meetings.

Part educational talk show, part wacky interactive experience, Sex Education Xplorers (or S.E.X. for short) is dedicated to understanding the ins and outs (and ins... and outs…) of our obsession and relationship with sex, identity, and gender. Iriguchi steadily breaks down the realms of science into a presentation filled with puppetry, graphics, and deconstructions of Finding Nemo.

Iriguchi possesses the charm required to execute much of the humour, but also a warmth to engage audiences with the topics at hand. It's a delicate balance, and Afton Moran (playing his assistant) walks the same fine line in order to examine oppression, liberation and the ongoing (if under-discussed) issues of trans visibility and support.

Up until this point, the appropriately convivial humour serves its purpose and successfully enhances the informative exploration of our bodies and the ongoing confusions of biological sex, gender, and the evolutionary process. But as the production shifts into the ‘post-talk’ situation, a frankness unfolds that rightly challenges the ongoing persecutions and ludicrous resistances towards gender fluidity and transsexuality.

Packing this much information and discourse into an entertaining hour is an astonishing feat, performed with a lustre, energy and blatant necessity as the performers explore sexuality, identity, and community. Perhaps more importantly than the show’s success, the established relationship with the audience opens the eyes of those already on the path, those who had questions but felt there were no answers. The journey of self-discovery is never-ending, and for Iriguchi and Independent Arts Projects, it’s just the beginning of a potentially flourishing show.

Sex Education Xplorers (S.E.X.), Summerhall (Secret Courtyard), returns only