$75 – $200

No Safe Words with Xanthine & River Dark

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Atrium Inn Vancouver

2889 East Hastings Street

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Vancouver, BC V5K 2A1

Canada

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Saturday Class Schedule

9:00 am - 10:30 am ~~ When it’s Not Just Fun and Games: Playing on the Dark Side
10:45 am - 12:15 pm ~~ Freedom of Choice
12:15 pm - 1:15 pm ~~ Lunch
1:15 pm - 2:45 pm ~~ Shades of Humiliation
3:00 pm - 4:30 pm ~~ Inside the Crucible
4:40 pm - 5:00 pm ~~ Q&A Period

Sunday Class Schedule

9:00 am - 10:30 am ~~ Helpful Sadist
10:45 am - 12:15 pm ~~ Flogging for Pain & Pleasure
12:15 pm - 1:15 pm ~~ Lunch
1:15 pm - 2:45 pm ~~ What You Are in the Dark
3:00 pm - 4:30 pm ~~ Strangulation & Asphyxiation: A study in breath control
4:40 pm - 5:00 pm ~~ Q&A Period

Classes with Xanthine

The Helpful Sadist (intermediate, hands-on, bring a short thick stick if you have one)

With fifteen years of bodyworking under their belt, Xanthine has naturally incorporated healing into their BDSM. Sore muscles and injuries can hinder your play, or with a bit of education and assessment, they can allow you to unleash your sadistic side in the name of science and healing. Identify issues, assess rope placement and positions, make your bottom call you every name in the book and thank you for it afterwards. For Science!

Inside The Crucible: Playing with Ordeals (advanced, demo and lecture, audience participation encouraged)

We often call BDSM ‘play’, and shy away from exposing the therapeutic and cathartic side of what we do. But what about when you want to push the boundaries of where you think you can go as a bottom or as a top? If you’ve ever wanted to integrate spiritual and emotional release and transformation into a scene, this class aims to give you tools to arm yourself for a journey into the dark part of play. We will learn to use tools, psychology, and environmental factors to induce altered states and push past limitations, to surprise ourselves with what the human mind, body, and connection is capable of achieving.

We will be conducting an ordeal during the class, and will ask for but not expect audience participation. Please don't arrive more than fifteen minutes late.

Freedom of Choice: Predicaments and Mindreading (lecture, demo, any level)

How do people make decisions? You want to play with predicaments, but how can you predict the outcome of an action while in scene? Learn to use cognitive bias and other modern discoveries in neuroscience to predict how the bottom will react and be motivated, and use this to structure the scene so it can end how you'd like it to. Predicaments give goals to look forward to and shake up the usual "beat me, Seymour" of dungeon play. The looks of consternation, the pleading eyes, the mad scientist in the lab - get your creativity flowing and your bottom looking for a hole to crawl into. Oh, you wanted a hole that isn't full of snakes? Oops!

What You Are In The Dark (All levels, demo and lecture, participation encouraged, designed for bottoms, tops, and switches)

“One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.”

Jung said that whatever we deem evil, inferior, or unacceptable and deny in ourselves becomes part of the shadow self. How do we access this part of ourselves? How do we keep ourselves safe, know what to touch, and what to stay away from? In this class, we'll explore the shadowy corners of our subconscious through psychology and a guided meditation exercise, animate our inner demons and safe spaces, and find ways to play that will delight, terrify, and sneakily tickle the ids of our partners. See your scenes through the eyes of a new character, without having to wear the costume.

Classes with River Dark & domenique:

Flogging for Pain and Pleasure

This class has nothing to do with how to flog beautifully. There are no fancy swings in this class. In this class we will teach you how to hit strong and hard. How to bring someone to tears and beyond using just a flogger. How to use a flogger to create a journey. If you have never picked up a flogger then this class is for you. If you just want to learn how to hit harder, this class is also for you. Bring a flogger and someone to hit for the hands on portion of this class. Limited access to my floggers and slave will be available on a last come, first served basis.

Strangulation & Asphyxiation: A study in breath control

Many people play with chocking and/or suffocation. Yet so often when we put anything over someone’s face that restricts the flow of air, or anything tight around someone’s neck, the cry “Breath Play” rings out as though it was murder most foul, or a universal safe word. Instead of lumping them together in a dark back room with “Dangerous Edge Play, Do Not Enter” written in blood on the door, let’s separate out these different strands and look at them in the light of day. What about them are unsafe and why? Is there anything that is safe about them and why? And, most importantly, what are some fun things we can do with them?!

When it’s Not Just Fun and Games: Playing on the Dark Side

What about when it’s not “fun”? What about when it does not feel “good”? Is it Ok for a Top to inflict pain purely for their own sadistic pleasure without considering the needs or wants of their bottom? If a bottom accepts this are they abused and in need of an intervention? Is training just about teaching or can it be about remaking and forging the person into what you want them to be? Can "this is for your own good" be an acceptable reason? In this workshop we explore the darker side of S/M and D/s that does not fit the rhetoric generated for the vanilla world. Where safe, sane and consensual are not a creed but instead one way of looking at things. Where punishment is not funishment, where tears shed are not always from happiness or release and where there are not always safewords.

Shades of Humiliation

If someone doesn’t find it humiliating is it humiliation play? What is the difference between humiliation and shaming? Is humiliation a type of play or does it entangle itself in all play? This workshop looks at the many shades of humiliation and attempts to answer the question “what is humiliation anyway?” Then, once that’s all figured out, we will have lots of fun (or not so fun) demos, stories and ideas to add to your toy bag!

About the presenters:

River Dark & domenique

River Dark is a Leatherdyke hailing from Vancouver, Canada. In 1982 she realized she was a lesbian and in 1991 she admitted to herself that she was a kinky - but with hindsight was both queer and a pervert as far back as she can remember.

In 1995 she started writing (& publishing) porn for the pleasure of her Master; and started teaching in 2005 spurred by her frustration with the quality of the classes she was attending at the time. Now, when not engaged in her Muggle life, she travels with domenique, her slave of 9 years, presenting workshops and creating scenes.

Born and raised in California, River's slave discovered the BDSM community when it was 19 and immediately embraced it with mind body and soul. Thirsty for intensity, connection, and sexual liberation DESIRE became the perfect place for it to explore and experience these things at a level it had always yearned for. It is both terrified and passionately interested in things involving the human heart and the power it holds, and is a bit obsessed with ideas around attachment, pain, and the healing process. It is a brat, a stray dog, a boi, a girl, and a sex slave who submits only to her Owner.

Over the years they have presented at many local, regional and international events & organizations. River dreams of finally finishing the anthology of erotic fiction and essay that she has been working on, and of a world where her dyke, poly, kinky, M/s heart is not incongruent with her Muggle life.

Xanthine

Xanthine identifies as a queer, sadomasochistic science nerd with a fondness for rope, ridiculousness, agony, and release. They focus their community efforts on education and promotion of responsible edge play with a goal of safer, more accessible spaces and a more diverse and welcoming crowd of weirdoes. They have taught at Kinkfest, Conception, Fapcon, Westcoast Bound, Dark Odyssey and other conferences.

As a massage therapist and energy worker, they focus their play style towards channeling pain into healing, transformation, and empowerment for both bottom and top. As a clown and activist, they seek to smash the patriarchy by dismantling ego and promoting laughter, connection, and sincerity in the dungeon.

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Atrium Inn Vancouver

2889 East Hastings Street

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Vancouver, BC V5K 2A1

Canada

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