I’ve been pole dancing for almost 6 years before I ever did my first solo. Yup. Performing was never really my thing. I only performed because it was new and it forced me to try new doubles with my pole partner Mirell.
So for years I pole danced for gigs, parties, whatever, but only as part of a duo called Girl VS Girl.
But for Polecats Manila’s 3rd year anniversary show last November 2012, we were tasked to come up with solos that would show our individual style as dancers. I hadn’t really thought of myself as a dancer until that point… but for the sake of pushing myself, of course I said YES.
Thank god I had just watched my friend, cellist Anjo Inacay perform for Ballet Philippines’ Crisostomo Ibarra a few weeks earlier. We had always talked about doing a collab together, so I thought this would be the perfect time.
And what song would be perfect for a cello solo? George Canseco’s Hiram , as performed in the Bolipata brothers’ album Pelikula at Pundaquit.
I decided that Anjo would be part of the dance (he would be the lover referred to in the song), and that we would both be blindfolded. I’ve forever loved Magritte’s The Lovers , and I took that as inspiration for the blindfolds, and I made Anjo wear a suit. I had a red lace costume made but it didn’t work out; my pole student (and future intern!) Tippi Sy would come to the rescue with a nude lace piece.
I asked the dancer with the most beautiful feet Dani Rodriguez for choreo help. It was so difficult for me to bare my soul on stage instead of doing just acrobatics.
AARGHHHHH. That is me wrestling with my feelings.
I had to dig deep for this one. I’m not an actress, I’m quite heartless most days, and I hate showing that I’m vulnerable, so this piece was very difficult. So I’m really lucky that Anjo is the best to work with! He makes it so easy. And such beautiful painful cello playing. I’m forever grateful that he agreed to do this (and he bought a new tie for this show as well!)
So we did it:
I’d like to perform this piece again, if only because I think I understand dancing much more now, a year later. I’ve retired from performing gigs, but I think if I had the chance to make something this personal again, I’d willingly do it, feelings and all.