“From an intellectual academic level,” says Rebecca Tingley, a fine arts Ph.D and former cast member of Chelsea Handler’s show, Girls Behaving Badly,
“I have been exploring how things surrounding women and their sexuality is always a secret.
“If you have an abortion it's a secret. If you're having your period it's a secret. If you are a woman that’s sexual, that’s supposed to be secret.” And, as we lately have been reminded, repeatedly and deeply disturbingly, molestation and harassment are always secret. Until they aren’t.
“Being able to talk frankly about sex from a female perspective demystifies it,” Tingley says. As a veteran New York and LA standup comic, she decided, “Let's just make a comedy show about sex so we can talk about whatever we want.” The result, Let’s Talk About Sex, Baby
, debuted successfully in October, and returns to Club Congress from 8 to 9:30 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 30. Doors open at 7:30; admission is $3.
Tingley’s wheelhouse is “feminist comedy,” a genre that undermines the dour stereotype of feminism with a fun-house mirror perspective on the culture that’s spawned it. “Feminist comedy is a nice niche,” Tingley says. “But I also wanted (the sex show) to have broader appeal
Her concept evolved over a year’s worth of weekly counsel from ballet moms at the studio where she enrolled her daughter. She describes them as ‘very progressive women,” who happened to have family ties to Hotel Congress.
“I told them about my idea,” Tingley says. “What could we do that would just be across the board something people would talk about? How could we draw people to it as a fun thing to do? Go laugh about sex! Have some drinks downtown!”
The outcome was a talk show, with Tingley in the Johnny Carson role, sidekick Tammy King as Ed McMahon and Tucson favorite Randy Ford as what Tingley says is a cross between Doc Severinsen and Vanna White. Tingley opens the show, then leads a segment called “Catching up with Tammy,” wherein she queries King, just divorced after 25 years, about her latest discoveries in the single life. “I describe her as going through puberty again,” Tingley says.
Four guest comedians do ten -minute sets, then field questions from the audience about sex. Phoenician Sari Beliak, headlines the show; Tucsonans Josiah Osego, CJ Lundblad and a special guest round out the evening.
“We really are talking about sex and we want comics to do jokes that are headed that way.”