Tipi Confessions

Tipi Confessions is not only sexy. Our audiences are reminded that sex is always also political. The Tipi Confessions enterprise also serves as a “research-creation laboratory” at the University of Alberta, Faculty of Native Studies. Our sexy performance laboratory is a space of creative experimentation and action research, both informed by and furthering existing research and teaching in decolonial and critical sexualities.


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Join us for RED HOT Tipi Confessions, San Francisco, CA.

Friday, April 3, 2020
Doors: 6:30PM, Show: 7:30PM
BRAVA Theater Center, Main Stage, 2781 24th St, San Francisco
Tickets available soon!

Over 15 years ago, Kateri Akiwenzie-Damm collected and edited a volume of Indigenous Erotica, Without Reservation, at a time when erotic stories in Indigenous literature were close to non-existent in print. Yet these stories existed and were taking form in fantasies, in whispered desires, on the mind, in the body, at the kitchen table… on the kitchen table. Pushing back on stereotypes and misnommers about Indigenous people, sex and sexuality, the volume brought to light the erotic in our experiences as “people who love each other, who fall out of love, who have lovers, who make love, have sex, break hearts, get our own hearts broken, who have beautiful bodies” (Akiwenzie-Damm 2003, xii). A few years later, in 2008, Akiwenzie-Damm reflected on W[R]ighting Indigenous Erotica in her essay,  “Red Hot to the Touch,” a reflective commentary on her own experience of love and desire, how to write about it, and that weaves in erotic vignettes. The essay further emphasizes the importance of reclaiming the erotic in Indigenous communities. 

As a sexy storytelling show, Tipi Confessions also aims to bring the [stage] light to storytellers and performers. Over the history of the show, performances and confessions have ranged from hilarious to cheeky, poignant to healing. Co-producer Kim TallBear grounds Tipi Confessions in the idea that “decolonizing sexuality, and sex positivity and healing more broadly, is key to curbing violence in our society in both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities”.  

Indigenous erotica, either through writing or performance, has inspired and continues to inspire diverse expressions of Indigenous sexualities. In partnership with the American Indian Studies Department, San Francisco State University, and inspired by the work of Akiwenzie-Damm, we want to honor the legacies and evoke continued possibilities and iterations of RED HOT. 

What does RED HOT mean to you?

Submit your Story.​ Become a Tipi Confessions performer! While we are produced by three Indigenous women, everyone is welcome in our tipi. We seek diverse voices from the San Francisco Bay area, especially if stories like yours often go untold. We are an ALL-INCLUSIVE enterprise: we welcome storytellers and performers of all genders, races, sexualities, and abilities. We encourage you to submit sexually-themed stories and performances. Your performance doesn’t need to be “erotic” (although we love well-crafted erotica), but it should pertain positively to sex and sexuality. Consider telling your story from a political, humorous, creative, feminist, or educational perspective. We want stories that fit our mission of ethics, education, and entertainment around sex, sexuality, and gender.

Types of Performances.​ Our shows have featured spoken word readings, personal narrative, memoir, fiction, burlesque, live musicians, and short theater performances/stage readings. We are also open to stand-up comics, video clips, and lively short lectures.

How to propose a concept. DEADLINE – FEBRUARY 14, 2020. Describe and explain your proposed performance, but also include some context for us such as motivation and intent. If you have specific questions about our expectations, please ask. Your submission should be: 1500 words or less. You can submit your story here, and send any additional supporting documents/audio/video to tipiconfessions@gmail.com

The Review Process.DECISION BY – FEBRUARY 21, 2020. Acceptances may be contingent upon an audition/interview (in person or via Skype).

Tipi Confessions is produced by three Indigenous women: University of Alberta professors Kim TallBear (Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate) and Tracy Bear (Nehiyaw’iskwew from Montreal Lake Cree Nation), and PhD student, Kirsten Lindquist (Cree-Métis). We are an offshoot of the popular Austin, Texas show, Bedpost ConfessionsTM, founded in 2010. For more information, visit www.tipiconfessions.com and www.bedpostconfessions.com

Our partner for this show: American Indian Studies Department, San Francisco State University

Save the date for  Tipi Confessions: The Indigenous WorldView .

Friday, May 8, 2020
Doors: 7:30PM / Show: 8:00PM
190 Auditorium OCAD U, 100 McCaul Street
Toronto, ON

More details coming soon!


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