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Yes, you read that right. A collective of dancers with members from all over Europe, Young Boy Dancing Group, are wowing crowds with their mixture of immersive theater, techno-futurism and sexy queer expression. Oh, and butt lasers.
Lasers in London
At Chapter 10 last October — arguably London’s most epic gay rave — the boys first got their lasers out. Their butts out. Their butts out with lasers in them. You get the idea.
With a performance space marked out by candles, the stage was set for something other-worldly, ritualistic and perhaps futuristically sexual.
“They challenge notions of gender and sexuality and constantly question institutionalized settings … it makes you either cry or get offended,” says curator Mette Woller. On the other hand, you might see laser-buttholes as a thing of beauty. We certainly do.
It’s not a gimmick
Aside from the coolest (dark) corners of East London, Young Boy Dancing Group have performed at high-brow cultural events such as the Lithuanian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale and Manifesta: The European Biennial of Contemporary Art in Zurich.
Talking to Thump, Manuel Scheiwiller — one of the group’s co-founders — shed a bit more light (no pun intended) on the boys and what they do:
“Young Boy Dancing Group is not really a fixed group; we try to keep it very [fluid]. … There are certain topics that are absolutely present. One is, for sure, queer. Other ones are dance, movement, body and of course sexuality.”
One of the members goes further than the laser, inserting a dildo covered in lights (below).
Making Out in Paris
In the French capital, the boys held a ‘make-out’ workshop where the audience all held hands and were encouraged to kiss. They did it in Zurich, too, with even more impressive results: “Everybody was so into each other,” said Scheiwiller.
It’s really not just about the laser scene. The group shares ideas the day before a performance and what happens next grows organically out of the suggestions and unique mix of the boys scheduled to perform at any given time.
But people ask for the laser scene more often than not.
Trial and error and hemorrhoids
It took a while to find the right laser. Some were too big, some needed to be stuck on, and some performers have had problems with, erm, sticking them in. Scheiwiller explains more deeply:
“There’s this one guy who joined the show in Berlin one day, and he had this huge laser. I saw him taking it out — we always put a condom over the laser to stay a bit clean — and his condom was just bloody. It was gross. I was like, “He’s going way too far, it’s too big!”
These guys are probably the coolest gay dance troupe on the planet right now.
Check out their Facebook group for news on upcoming shows, with the next on March 23 at the Caroussel Cabaret, near Pigalle, in Paris.
(Photos by David Stjernholm via Thump)