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Last Chance: 'Sex: What She's Really Thinking' A Delightful Romp

The final performance will take place Sunday at 2:30 p.m.

Photo Credit: Thomas Wheeler
Photo Credit: Thomas Wheeler
There's a line in the magazine industry, when editors are sitting around late at night designing an issue, searching for cover lines that will grab the reader, make them pick up the issue and devour the pages: Sex sells.

But sex, the primal force, the deepest urge, the tie that binds men and women, the bottom line most dizzying experience couples can share, might also be called The Great Divide, with men and women's views on The Act as divergent as, well, birds and bees.

"Sex: What She's Really Thinking," which has its last performance on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. at Center Stage at the Southampton Cultural Center's Levitas Center for the Arts, is a new play written by Ilene Beckerman, who also wrote "Love, Loss and What I Wore," and Center Stage director Michael Disher. The show explores the deeply intimate thoughts that have long gone unspoken between the sexes — until now.

The first time, the worst time, sex toys, men are boys — not a single topic is left on the table in this raucously funny romp, that has audiences laughing loudly and nodding at universal truths.

"First encounters, facts, fictions, fantasies and  finalities are presented in a fast paced flurry of monologues and sketches stamped with Beckerman's unique wisdom and wit," a description by SCC read.

The completely new and original work features a top-notch cast, including local radio personality Bonnie Grice, Joan Lyons, Josephine Wallace, Danielle Shuman, Gina Surnicki, Amy Rowland, Tom Rosante, Matthew O'Connor — and, during Saturday evening's performance, a star turn by Joyce Pitkin, who lives at Peconic Landing in Greenport and has been a lifetime supporter of the arts.

The show is presented in a series of vignettes, with a set of only bright red chairs splashing across the blank stage, allowing the actors full reign to give full voice, color and life to the words, the delightful and deeply personal script that resonates with a rapt audience.

The characters are Every Man, and Every Woman as they dance around the subject that tethers us all — trying to make rhyme or reason out of the most puzzling, infuriating, and deeply gratifying experience in life.

Starting with "Fever," carefully chosen music ushers the audience into a sultry mood, allows them to explore their own feelings about steamy sex as the actors delve into the most sensual, satisfying and sometimes, sticky situations men and women share.

Yes, there is a dizzying divide between how men and women view sex, and one another. He worries about performance, she stresses that he thinks she's fat. He wants to close the door for a private phone call, she thinks he's having phone sex. She wants love, family, babies, commitment. He wants sex.

But there are also moments when men and women cross the divide and find bliss and forever companionship in a kiss, a beloved's embrace.

The writing is fast-paced and funny, and at times, achingly familiar. Disher's direction keeps the show moving and the audience laughing, but takes the time to explore, and celebrate, sex. 

Because despite the differences, the toll newborn babies take on honeymoon passion, the boredom in a marital bed after 30 years of same old, same old, the temptation to stray or find satisfaction in a porn flick, despite the nagging and whining, wishing and pining, sex, in the end, is that canvas upon which every romantic fantasy, every lifelong bond, every love story, is painted.

What would we do without it?

Don't miss your last chance to see this evocative and hilarious production. The last show will be performed Sunday at 2:30 p.m. The Southampton Cultural Center is located at 25 Pond Lane in Southampton. General Admission, $22;
students with ID, $12. For further information, call 631-287-4377 or click here.

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