Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Pole to Pole (or: Art Can Be Sexy and Sex Can Be Artistic)

Travis Scott, Chris Talbot and Luke Quadrio - Pure Pole Studs
There has been some talk of adding Pole Dancing to the 2016 Olympics. Some people I've mentioned this to have expressed disdain and even disgust at the notion. Yes, I know - Pole Dancing is usually associated with sleazy girls in "Gentlemen's" clubs. But lately, the grace and athleticism required for such performances has been acknowledged as something more than just "dirty." Hell, on last season's 'America's Got Talent' a male pole dancer, Steven Retchless, almost made it to the semi-finals.

The upper-body strength required to do these impressive moves is nothing less than amazing. Personally, I would give almost anything to be able to do what these guys do. Gay Aussie trio Pure Pole Studs are proving that athletes can be sexy (not that anyone doubted that, anyway). Take a quick look at what these boys can do (via):

How can anyone say these guys aren't athletes? Can you do that? I doubt it. I know I certainly can't (nor ever could). And honestly, what delineates Pure Pole Studs from the Chinese Poles performers in Cirque du Soliel's Saltimbanco? I'm guessing it's fancy costumes and and a live orchestra:

Saltimbanco was the first of many live Cirque du Soleil productions I have seen. My dear friend Elizabeth and I were entranced. They never fail to amaze and excite me and always make me wish I was capable of performing such astonishing feats of athleticism. Many Olympic gymnasts have gone on to become Cirque performers and Prospero's own Ariel (the very sweet and intensely focused Christina) has studied with them, going on to create her own athletic clowning duo which performs all over the world. Cirque even has a show in Vegas that is all about human sexuality, "Zumanity" at the New York, New York casino and hotel:

So, where do we draw the line between 'Sex' and 'Art?' Not an easy question. Nor should it be. Pole dancers as athletes? Athletes as sexual beings? To me, it's all just part of being human.

More, anon.

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