Performance conflict.

There’s a tough balance between showgirl style shows and kinky fetish performance that I do both to entertain myself and entertain the audience. I also love making the audience squirm but thats my sadistic side coming out to play.  I find I need to swing between those 2 extremes in my performance to fully engage myself in my work. Not in every show but sprinkled through ought the day and different days of the week.

For me the introduction into the world of fetish was an accident and resulted in self exploration in the area of letting go of stress and external worry and distraction. I love the hyper level of focus that a fire or hot wax show demands. Soft shows like burlesque feather fans or Asian silk veil fans are very ornamental and pretty but do not centre me or create the stress release that fetish does.

Fucked up entertainment service.

A large irony of the adult entertainment business, specifically exotic dance in this case, is the huge amount of exhaustive human interaction stage performers and private dancers/freelancers have to deal with on a daily basis. People call those jobs “unskilled” work but the reality is dealing with humanity in such raw atmosphere takes more skill then many more repected professions.

I did business management in downtown vancouver for about 7 years and boy, THAT was hard work with minimum wage and long hrs but not much attitude difference between customers, I was just wearing more clothing. The irony is that in any service industry you see the best and worst of humanity at any given time. Because there is no regulation on customer behaviour absolutely anything can happen. The amount of privilege and self entitlement many people have is mind blowing. The painful part is when that self entitlement and disrespect travels into the owners/managements position and destroys the business from the inside. They forget their entire purpose of existence is to positively SERVE the customer. Not disrespect them or see them as JUST a walking cash cow.

There is regrettably no regulations governing the ownership/management of a business and so a LOT of abuse takes place within its confines and is allowed because of the simple fact that people need jobs. Allowances are made when resources are needed and degradation of the business and employees begins without hindrance.

The unfortunate part is when your enjoyment of the job dwindles and your stress increases and depression/anxiety become a repeating factor. Many turn to drug/alcohol use to cope with the job and it becomes a vicious cycle of both physical and mental survival thats difficult to win. Any demons/burried psychological issues bubble to the surface and will trigger breakdowns and uncover a lot of buried memories if there are areas the person hasn’t dealt with in their own psyche. Its a very critical job that easily erodes self esteem and personal boundaries if one is not comfortable enough retaining standards you refuse to budge from.

The only thing that defines us the most in pour stage presence and performances overall is our individual skills, personalities and spiritual essence that others either connect with or run from. Trying to stuff everyone into a generic box doesn’t work, it eliminates the value of the industry and destroys the very product of the business.

 

Bigger shows.

Funny thing about being an audience per on is that we want to be entertained. That is the entire reason you go into a place with entertainers. You don’t want to be bored or see endless processions of generic garbage. That’s cheap and boring. Big shows are the ultimate escape and are always amazing to see. The fun part is being both a performer AND an audience member. You see what is amazing and massively question yourself on how big should you go. How big CAN you go and how big can you physically and financially afford to go.

Its a tough balance as well between what shows are most entertaining: uber silly, gut busting funny or more intense darker/imposing/graceful shows. How big should props be, how many props, how many skills should be demonstrated, how much is too much but how little is too little. The difficulty comes into play with the size/complexity increase of the show. It takes more time to prep and more time to clean up/organize afterward. If anyone has a private dance quota they have to meet and exceed then show prep WILL cut into dances sold, its a given and unavoidable.

It boils down to what is most valuable: more dances sold or a more entertained crowd that will stay longer in the bar, be return customers, truly enjoy their time and highly recommend the location as a positive and enjoyable experience to their friends and anyone visiting that they may know who would possibly be interested.

This week I’m learning first hand the power of a BIG show by  amazing performers with a strong array of skills who bust out the full monty and blows the audience out of the water with awesomeness. Its really forcing me to take a look at the skills I have and what I could have, what I do and what I COULD do. Its incredibly humbling and very awe inspiring. True showmanship is very rare and so is incredibly positive attitude and generosity. Its so valuable and worth its weight in gold in any field of business.

Loss.. Vayda Kiss.

Learned of the death of an amazing performer and friend Vayda Kiss today after work, we were getting ready to head out when my friend checked her Facebook and saw news of the loss. Neither of us had expected it as we didn’t know her well, only knowing her from a distance and talking with her a few times. She was incredibly inspiring regardless of the distance, her spirit touched many people and her bubbliness and joy was infectious.

The news inspired a discussion in our room regarding life and how fragile it really is. How we think there’s all the time in the world when really its not. How strong we think ourselves when we’re just mortal human.

The most powerful thing we leave behind is the quality we have given our life and the respect we have earned by simply being the best we could be. By inspiring others, that is the finest memory to give, to bring strength by example, elegance and grace.

Vayda was humble, honest and real. Shaking with fear before doing a show that would blow minds out the door, she worked incredibly hard at her craft and won acclaim through guts, determination and drive.

Rest in peace my friend, always remember that the wind loves you and the sky is free.

The classy/dress code audience/performance.

The funniest thing in the industry is the spectrum of audience that exists. The most ironic difference is between what is the “desired” audience and what is the actual best one for business and survival.  What is also most hilarious is the vast difference between perception and reality.

People are very fond of creating a persona, quite often the person you think is most wealthy is in fact the poorest one in the bar and the person who looks the most slouchy and comfortable is in fact the one with the biggest bang for his buck.

The problem with the current shift of bar atmosphere is it alienates the most profitable and long term dedicated audience members from their favourite watering holes while trying to cater to newer clientele.  The difficulty is creating a balanced and inclusive atmosphere that is both welcoming of older favorites and comfortable for newer blood. Its a delicate balance.

The spectrum of performance is also fascinating: often there is a difference between what the owner wants/likes personally and what their clientele is interested in. What is classically funny is the most polished audience member who sits quietly in the least obvious spot in the bar… is the kinkiest fetishist in the building and tips big for the unusual fetish show he just saw. Its difficult to explore varied tastes when bar focus is narrow and too select. Long term survival becomes the issue at stake.