As this month is Pleasure and Pain month at TheGayUK, I thought I’d return to a theme that is rather dear to my heart. As many of you will know, I practice tantric massage, which is something that very much comes under the umbrella of pleasure. The Massage Show is the brainchild of sex and relationship expert, and sensual masseur Colin Richards, and a few days ago I was fortunate enough to be invited along to experience one of his shows.
“I think an awareness in my early training that there was a fear surrounding intimate contact that needed to be addressed, and actually made available.”
Noting that Colin is a sex and relationship counsellor, I asked him how this informed what he did within the confines of The Massage Show.
“It allows me to explain the broader perspective and influences that make us the sexual/sensual human beings we are, influences that are psychological, biological, physiological and anthropological.”
Apparently the idea for creating a massage show, where attendees could get to witness a real sensual massage from beginning to end, originally came from attending mechanical non-connected, badly run adult parties. Colin was able to combine his hospitality background with his knowledge of sex and sexuality. He organises both mixed male/female parties and male only parties and he tells me that, energetically, there is quite a difference between the two
“Mixed audiences tend to be louder and more dynamic, which is influenced by the re-emergence and reclaiming of female sexuality. Women, in the safety of groups, tend to be more vocal, rowdier even, whereas the all-male groups tend to split down the middle between those who are there to learn and those, generally closeted bisexuals, who want to come and play.”
This can cause a mild conflict in the chemistry and Colin is now looking into ways of splitting the two elements.
Colin goes off to prepare himself and a pre-arranged volunteer for the show, a massage table is brought in to the centre of the room and the rest of us (twelve guests) are enjoined to sit on chairs and sofas around the room. We sit quietly, expectantly, speaking in hushed tones and then Colin comes into the room to make a short speech before the massage begins. He speaks from a psychotherapist’s perspective about attitudes to sex and how they colour our lives. He has the perfect attitude, knowledgeable but friendly, confident and comfortingly assured. He advises us that, though it is perfectly normal for people to become aroused by what they are about to see, he would prefer us to stay clothed and not to attempt to join in. Looking around the room, the audience appear very well behaved to me. I can’t imagine them doing otherwise.
The volunteer enters naked but for a towel, which he removes prior to getting onto the table face down, the lights are dimmed and the show begins. At first a feather is passed over the body before Colin starts to massage with the lightest of touches, moving on to deeper, more passionate strokes, eventually removing his own clothes too.
The audience sits silently, expectantly, almost reverently. Some take notes. The massage lasts just over an hour and, as Colin moves to the climax (literally), some members of the audience get up or move around to get a better view. Clearly they are keen to see that nothing is faked. I confess I have to admire both Colin and the masseur for being able to block them out and carry on as if no-one was there.
After the massage is over, Colin presides over a question and answer session. Questions range from technical questions regarding the massage to questions about the difficulty of performing before an audience. As before, Colin proves to be a masterful question master. Maybe made more comfortable now by their shared experience, the audience also seems more relaxed and able to chatter more freely. Colin tells us that massage tables are available in other rooms for guests to try out their techniques if they so wish and some do indeed avail themselves of this opportunity. Others sit around chatting in what has become a most convivial atmosphere.
Before I left I asked Colin what he would say to someone who is curious, but a little nervous, about attending for a first time.
“It is designed to be an evening of social and sensual networking with likeminded people. They can remain an observer or they can come and practice their skills on other volunteers or guests. No pressure, just authentic, meaningful human interaction, both verbal and physical over good food and wine.”
The next all male massage show is on November 1st. You can find more info and book your place by going tohttp://www.massage33.com/news/the-massage-show/. If you have any interest at all in sensual massage and what it can contribute to your sex life and/or your relationship, I would definitely give it a try.