Yesterday was a great day, I had two fabulous hours of teaching, got through a huge pile of admin and performed at the Saints annual awards ceremony at Raffles, all was good. So today I awoke with a big smile on my face ready to face the day, but my good mood was about to be ruined by a phone call from Sanjay at Plymouth university explaining why I was being denied the right to perform at the dance dance dance event.
It seems that certain individuals have decided that my performance would be unsuitable for children who will be in the audience yet I had already sent an e-mail confirming that my performance would be suitable for all ages. The individuals who have complained obviously are acting on a stereotype and have overlooked that the fact that my act is no different than a circus act such as trapeze or Chinese pole. How many children enjoy going to the circus and watching such acts? It is for these reasons that I felt I should be included and it would not have been the first time I had performed in front of children, There are always children present at the Women's Health fair and there were children present at the launch of the newly refurbished Lux park leisure centre. I have never had any complains from any of the families of these children in fact many parents have asked me I could teach their children.
What makes the decision worse is that the acts still performing include Salsa and belly dancing which have a definite sexual element. Despite contradictory reports on the history of belly dancing it is widely agreed that belly dancing was traditionally used to advertise fertility and eroticism.
Apart from my immediate anger at being pulled from the event I have spent valuable hours advertising the event, my students have been buying tickets and I have written about it in my blog as well as on my website. It seems all that time is now wasted and I have no way of trying to convince 'those individuals' to review their perceptions of Pole dancing. I would like to point out that Sanjay himself has expressed his regret that he could not get 'those individuals' to change their mind so I still wish him every success with the event and hope that perhaps next year people might be a little more open minded.
I will write something with a little more health and fitness content when I have calmed down,