Well, the Pole Convention was a blast! Highlights included the BadKitty Fashion Show, an amazing showcase of your favorite pole stars including Felix Cane, Karol Helms, Alethea Austin, Estee Zakar, Mina Mortezaie, Amber Ray, Zoraya Judd, and Sally-Ann Giles. There was a “Spins and Tricks Battle” won by MISTER Josiah “Badazz” Grant, and there were a number of workshops offered throughout the weekend. All (well, almost all!) of our favorite vendors were there including Bad Kitty Exotic Wear, who launched their amazing new PoleFit line, PoleSkivvies, X-Pole and The Pole Fitness Association. And last but not least, there were a number of speakers who presented on topics ranging from pole going to the Olympics to the importance of eating right. The Convention was well attended and of course, incredibly fun!
Aside from being fun, the pole convention had the benefit of uniting a group of people whose primary form of connection, until this weekend, has been the internet and competitions. It was both exciting and inspiring to see how far some women had traveled (Australia! Luxembourg!) just to be a part of this event. And it spoke to the passion and the dedication that I think is an inherent part of this movement.
What I also found fascinating was how different each dancer’s performance was in the Showcase of the Stars. Styles ranged from an elegant almost ballet-like performance to a sassy burlesque striptease, to several downright sexy, erotic dances. I was very excited that Alethea Austin chose to do quite a bit of floor work in her routine – something that I think is missing in many of the studios. I was also rather pleased that the sensually based movements got just as much applause as the exquisite pole tricks. Whenever a dancer would do something a little naughty, there would be quite a bit of shrieking and cheering from the audience. It appears that women are just as excited about being sexy as they are about throwing tricks on the pole.
As many of you know, I spoke at the convention about bringing pole into the public eye, and how to deal with issue of sexuality in our dance. I cannot tell you how happy I was with everyone who came and listened. I was particularly touched by the stories some of you chose to share. While I know that I did not address everyone’s concerns, I WILL be writing about them in the future. Your questions and comments renewed and affirmed my commitment to sharing the benefits of pole dancing with anyone and everyone who will listen! I was thrilled to be able to present and per your requests, I will be posting my speech on YouTube by the end of the week. Please feel free to forward it anyone who you think would be interested! See you at next year’s convention!