We would love to respond to the recent comments from a Crawley councillor who was found stating that pole dancing shows ‘undermine women, they are sexist and sleazy not the standard of production that should be on at the Hawth theatre'..
First of all I would like to start by saying the Miss Pole Dance competitions and productions, leading on to the World Pole Sport & Fitness annual World Championships was created way back in 2004 to educate and promote the art of the pole dance and fitness techniques required on and around the vertical bar.
It was my soul ambition in the year 2004 when Pole Fitness and dancing did not exist outside of gentleman's clubs and sex establishments and to give these 'athletic and creative dancers' the credibility they deserved, on a non-judgemental stage away from leering gentlemen for tipping and stripping !
Even Davina McCall's, 'Got to Dance' and Britain's got talent, wanted our talent to appear on their shows !
I do not blame the councillor for making such comments as I believe they have not been educated to modern concepts of the pole fitness and dance, which I live and breathe every day running my pole fitness company Pole Passion Limited, which incidentally has now over 4000 local students mainly women, (although we are seeing an increase of guys wanting to give it a go,) with the average ages of students anything between the ages of 16 and 60 and operating a successful licensing operation throughout West Sussex operating out of gyms such as Nuffield Health and Well Being and the Triangle, Freedom Leisure, Lifeline fitness, Virgin Active to mention a few.
We even defied the fitness industry and have REP’s accredited pole fitness instructor training courses which are growing yearly.
As a fitness and beauty expert with over 25 years experience working along side women, enjoying the variety of dance and fitness available to all, it became apparent to me after the birth of my third child there was nothing accommodating my fitness desires at that time.
I was in search of something to help me, not only tone and become healthier both mentally and physically, which included fun and most importantly for me to feel womanly again and regain my post baby shape, which let’s face it, after three was going to be a challenge for any sport to tackle!!
Unlike my councillor friend i thought out of the box and thought if I were to remove the pre conceived misconceptions of pole dance history, maybe I could also help other frustrated women like myself, feeling trapped in today's modern gender role changing society.
So to cut a very very long story short (yes it’s film worthy!!) of surviving cancer, supporting women with muscular dystrophy, self harm people, ladies with low self esteem, obese ladies who still want to have some fun in a non judgemental environment, post natal mothers, disabled ladies unable to participate in other sports and dance, doctors, lawyers, police superintendents and the list goes on. I am still as passionate today, about my vision as i was when i first found pole (accidentally at a party waaaaay back)
Promoting the ambitious and talented - educating and introducing these endless, gymnastic and acrobatic, artful and skilful techniques to all who have the right and wish to try something new and challenging both mentally and physically !
I even created Mr Pole Fitness UK in 2009 in an attempt to change the stereotypical visions of public perception too of men on a pole - NOW, oh my goodness, are these guys catching up!!
Check out our current champion Mr Nico Modestine who incidentally will be showcasing and creating most of the cheers from the 90 per cent female audience at the Hawth on Sunday 15th September - so therefore not undermining women in the slightest!
Mr Pole Fitness Winner Nico Modestine @ MPD UK 2012
Incidentally Nico has no dance back ground just martial arts and this was his first pole dance performance and had only been doing pole for 6 months !! quite impressive by any fitness standards i think the councillor will agree.
I am proud i have created a non judgemental and safe, drug free, non smoking, environment for these artists and I believe it will continue for centuries to come with a new breed of polers now emerging to our lessons
I chose the Hawth as they boast they offer the liveliest and most diverse programmes in the arts and performance sector. One of my first questions to the Hawth, when in search for a sit down theatre venue (My home theatre) was, what will the council say?? will they approve it ? Their spokes person said, ' If we can have the Puppetry of a Penis where men are making shapes with their genitals I think another dance show will be just fine !!' - Naturally I loved their support and answer !!
Happy to chat further - and in the words of the great performer Freddie Mercury - The show must go on !
founder Miss Pole Dance UK - Crawley West Sussex