No. There’s a certain culture that is important to this sport that comes and goes. At a club in Berlin in the early 2000s there wasn’t long before a woman in her 60s got sick and died after a few days of pole dancing. I was there and I heard that they didn’t have good equipment or a medical care and just that they were waiting for someone to come by who would take care of them. Some people were in bed and they were already at a time point, even though their heart was going, when they died. It is a dangerous sport when you need all that and you lose it when you don’t have the opportunity to have it at that point, but that will change. The safety situation [in Germany] is better than it was a couple of years ago but it’s not quite where that needs to be.
Can you tell us the names of your competitors? Any female competitors?
We have female competitors, so of course they are getting in there. The most popular among us is the girl who does the “Dances with the Angels” dance. For us that was a choreographed dance which she is doing so there is a competition for the best dressed. There are guys who show up and compete but it’s really more of a social dance. We have women going to dance shows all over the world so you don’t have to worry about a woman’s safety. We actually have a girl who is performing with two other guys. They are taking it seriously, but it’s all about having fun. Our main dancer’s daughter also does it and when she saw what was going on she asked, “Would it be okay for me to come with the girls?” She’s a really nice girl and very into this art.
It is a very special kind of performance. It’s one thing to come out with your hands all open and look at people and dance around you, but another thing to do it from the back and see yourself, see the audience, do it with your partner. It’s a really amazing performance to be involved in and it’s great to come as a group and all of this goes together. It’s really like a family thing. You do it together.
When did this event started? Who started it and when?
That’s actually hard to say, even though it has been growing and growing every year for the last five, six, seven years. I remember when I first came back from Japan after a year and half
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