Sex in the Theater: Jeremy O. Harris and Samuel Delany in Conversation

Toniann Fernandez in The Paris Review:

At three in the afternoon on a Friday in late January, Jeremy O. Harris arranged for an Uber to bring Samuel Delany from his home in Philadelphia to the Golden Theatre in New York City. Chip, as the famed writer of science fiction, memoir, essays, and criticism prefers to be called, arrived in Times Square around seven that evening to watch one of the last performances of Harris’s Slave Play on Broadway.

Though the two had never met before, Delany has been hugely influential on Harris, and served as the basis for a character in the latter’s 2019 Black Exhibition, at the Bushwick Starr. And Delany was very aware of Harris. The superstar playwright made an indelible mark on the culture, and it was fitting that the two should meet on Broadway, in Times Square, Delany’s former epicenter of activity, which he detailed at length in his landmark Times Square Red, Times Square Blue and The Mad Man.

After the production, Harris and Delany met backstage. “A lot of famous people have been through here to see this play, but this is everything,” Harris said. The two moved to the Lambs Club, a nearby restaurant that Harris described as “so Broadway that you have to be careful talking about the plays. The person that produced it is probably sitting right behind you.” (Right after saying this, Harris was recognized and enthusiastically greeted by fellow diners.) Over turkey club sandwiches and oysters, Harris and Delany discussed identity, fantasy, kink, and getting turned on in the theater.

More here.