Jeff Awards To Present Intimacy Design Panel

Jeff Awards To Present Intimacy Design Panel

Pictured: Tonia Sina

The Jeff Awards will present a panel conversation on the art and challenges of intimacy design on Tuesday, August 14 at 7:30 pm at the Greenhouse Theater. The panel will be led by Tonia Sina, co-founder of the Oklahoma City-based Intimacy Directors International, and Chicago intimacy designers Sasha Smith and Gaby Labotka.

Intimacy design is the creation intimate scenes for the stage that “create safe places for dangerous work,” according to Intimacy Directors International. Sina’s method borrows from the protocols of fight direction, with the same focus on keeping actors safe in potentially dangerous circumstances. “With stage combat, you can get stabbed in the eye or punched in the face,” she said. “This is emotional and mental health, which is just as important.”

Safe intimacy design methods have made significant strides in the theater industry in recent years, particularly in Chicago as the portrayal of sexual behavior onstage in Chicago theatre companies has received national media attention.

Members of the public are welcome and encouraged to attend the program. If interested in attending the August 14 program, please email David Liesse, Jeff Awards Committee Chair at [email protected].

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PerformInk is Chicago's entertainment industry trade publication.