Pet, get on your knees.” A middle-aged man, dressed in nothing but a patent leather thong and collar, kneels and starts licking the dominatrix’s stilettos. “See, I train my pets very well,” says Madam Storm, holding high in one hand the leash that’s attached to the man’s collar and a wooden cane in the other.
I’m at Learn The Art Of Seduction, the first seminar the dominatrix and female confidence coach has held with her partner Mr Marcus, at Hoxton Square Bar And Kitchen in Shoreditch – an event that showcases what she teaches in the one-to-one seduction classes she holds with women, along with her Strut workshops.
It’s been fairly raucous until this point. The night kicks off with smoky whisky cocktails and a BDSMthemed game of charades, with the audience of around 40 – nearly all female – shrieking clues to each other to describe spanking horses, latex gloves, nipple clamps and an electric shock crop.
Then the power couple struts in, Madam Storm head-to-toe in a dark glittery dress that shimmers like the night sky. Mr Marcus takes his seat next to an array of whips, ball gags and sensory deprivation masks decorated with handpainted flower patterns (he’s a designer and fetish wear artist).
The first third of the night is structured as a Q&A hosted by erotic writer Yve Nimi, who first asks the couple how they met – which instantly descends into the story of when they first had sex.
This sets the tone for the rest of the night. As Torture Garden regulars (the world’s largest fetish club, in London) and BDSM connoisseurs, Madam Storm and Mr Marcus respond openly and non-judgementally to audience questions about introducing kinks to the bedroom and their partners, how to “play” safely and what all the equipment is for.
The vibe switches between serious discussions about the importance of honest communication between men and women, and uproarious chats about the etiquette of sending dick pics.
Audience members are telling personal stories about their relationships, asking questions that would be outrageous in almost any other context, or whooping and clapping at the couple’s kinky stories, in turn.
We’re a few cocktails in and have just taken five to grab another from the bar, when we’re surprised with a seduction demonstration by Madam Storm and Mr Marcus.
She performs a sexy dance for him, dressed in a leather harness, before he pulls a sensory deprivation mask over her face and proceeds to spank her.
We’re all starting to get a bit hot under the collar when Mr Marcus calls time out, the music stops and we all laugh and applaud.
An audience member speaks of how “refreshing and beautiful” it is to see a black couple occupying the stage, and how she feels this is unusual in the kink and BDSM scene – which is also met with applause from the majority-black crowd.
Then it all gets a bit more interactive, as Mr Marcus takes a back seat and Madam Storm calls for her “pet” to join her on stage.
For the first time, the audience is quiet, studying the dominatrix’s body language and vocal instructions as she demonstrates the dom-sub dynamic.
Now it’s our turn. “Who wants to spank him?” she asks, and a few tentative hands go up.
Audience members try their hand with the cane and the flogger whip, while Madam Storm makes certain that they’re allowed to explore the technique in a safe space – no laughing is tolerated, only encouragement.
Madam Storm teaches one woman in the audience how to use her voice to instruct the “pet” – “Come here, pet. Stand up straight. Kneel down.” – and asks her, afterwards, how it made her feel.
“Liberated,” she says, smiling broadly.
We’re pretty sure the “pet” is enjoying himself, too, which is confirmed when Madam Storm gives him permission to speak about his fetish. He’s as enthusiastic as his mistress allows him to be.
After a quick crash course in candle wax dripping, the night draws to an end and we reluctantly cheer the couple off stage and tipsily make our way home.
I’m sure everyone in the room left with an opened mind, a feeling of freedom and the confidence to tell their kinky secrets to their partners when they got home.
That’s what Madam Storm’s art of seduction classes are all about – giving people the confidence to own, and explore, their sexuality. And that’s a pretty powerful gift.