When you hear names like Jenyne Butterfly, Alethea Austin, KT Coates, Marlo and Steven Retchless, you think of amazing form, straight lines, beautiful aesthetic and probably big egos. But that’s actually not the case.
It takes a very together and down-to-earth person to maintain a sense of modesty amongst an industry full of physical judgment and bare skin. These people, and in fact most big names in pole, smile huge and welcome strangers to their craft with a big hug.
The International Pole Convention 2012 was a true testament to this statement. Not only that, but I actually had the privilege and fortune to work alongside Margo while she was a pole dance instructor in New York City at SHOCKra Studio. It was a fleeting two months that we shared pole space (of which Margo became the US Pole Dance Championship 2010 winner), but during that time I got an up-close-and-personal look at how a true pole champion behaves.
Rewinding two years prior to the Big Apple’s east side, Margo and myself bumped shoulders many a Thursday, Friday, Saturday and/or Sunday night, mostly engulfed in my fumbling admiration of her awesomeness. I love Margo; have held conversations with her, spoke of mutual friends we never knew we had in common, and even cheered loudly for her in an opposing competitors’ section during her 2010 US Pole Dance Championship triumph.
My favorite part of that woman is that she is completely normal and as human as all of us. We spoke of diet, fatigue, dating and real things that happen to real pole instructors. And although she’s graduated to super famous in our industry, I know that I could approach her at any time, say hello and she’d be thrilled to see me.
Fast forward to Pole Con 2012, a wonderfully relevant international pole dancing convention in the heart of sunny Los Angeles. Here, the names mentioned above (including Margo) roamed the halls of the LAX Marriot within their natural habitat, yet larger than life.
These magnificent people are so inspiring and beautiful that it’s hard to think of them as “people.” Jenyne Butterfly, probably being one of the most elite names in both aerial and pole right now, strutted right past me with a twinkle in her eye. And although I don’t personally know Jenyne, the studio owner who I teach for does, which made me want to scream out, “Hi Jenyne! How are you?! You are so cool and pretty!” But I didn’t. Nevertheless, she looked at me, smiled and said, “Hi!”
That’s how the big names do it; they remain cool, calm and collected. They may or may not know that they’re invincible and dominant, but their mellowed confident stature and presence keeps them real.
Oh how I wish every famous person in the world had this trait. It’s as if they don’t seem to notice that their athletic bodies are among the best … ever … or that their moves are the most innovative we’ve seen. They always remain in a student’s mentality and never lose their ‘human’ quality. They’re just so gracious, our great pole dancing leaders.
And here’s to you: Cheers!
Bio: Jeanette is an aerialist (Lyra, hammock, silks) turned pole dancer since 2008. She became a pole dancing and acro instructor shortly after learning the craft, and currently writes for poleista.co.uk, which allows her to merge her passion with her journalism bachelor’s degree. She plans to open her own pole dancing studio in Northern California early in 2013.