Dancing in an Open Bar

This topic contains 4 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by Profile photo of Janet Hanseth Janet Hanseth 5 years, 7 months ago.

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    Profile photo of Janet Hanseth
    Janet Hanseth

    Originally posted by Joan Marie on tribe.net.Hi ladies,br/br/I have a question about taking gigs at an open bar. Up until recently, my troupe has not had the opportunity to accept a gig in an open bar. We are focused mostly on festivals and womens groups. We did get an invite to perform at their full moon party. It as also volley ball night. We researched the venue and did not find anything negative. However, this place has had a rep for being a "meat market" on weekends. It is under new owner ship and has taken steps to upgrade its image. We decided to give it a try but did speak with the management about our concerns regarding their past rep. They bent over backwards to accomodate us. The crowd was what we expected, a mid-week volley ball crowd. It was a lot of fun and we would consider it again if it was a mid week event. We have a policy that we will NOT take weekend open bar gigs.br/br/We received unsolicited input from two other belly dance troupes in the area questioning if we really wanted to do that venue due to its rep and also their thougths that they felt taking this gig did much to elevate the artform. br/br/So, my question is, what are your thoughts on taking gigs in an open bar, week day or weekend. Just thoughts in general. Have we done a disservice to the artform by accepting this gig? br/br/Thoughts would be much appreciated. Thanks Joan



    Originally posted by Sandi on tribe.net.Your reputation is based on your performance and behavior and less so on the venue. Sometimes people hire "bellydancers" thinking they will be a PG-13 version of a stripper. Sometimes people hire bellydancers to create an atmosphere and light entertainment for their crowd with no disrespect for the dance form. You really have to listen to your gut on the place/people/purpose. br/br/Culture and community play a part. Our audiences in SF tend to be more progressive, artsy, liberal and love the happy surprise of a strong dance presentation, breaking their stereotypes of "bellydancers". In fact, we get a lot of gigs that way. And vice versa, your stereotype of certain bars might be changed as well.br/br/Weve done plenty of clubs, bars, parties where they didnt "get it". Thats fine. Thats when we focus on the job and dance with/for each other without reacting to the people. If they are totally disrespectful and get too close or offensive, we leave. Luckily, we havent had to do that, but that is our backup plan when things go awry. One drunk person causing trouble will most likely get policed by the rest of the crowd who would like to enjoy the show. Generally, if theyre paying us to do a gig, we will do it to the best of our ability, then go home.



    Originally posted by Joan Marie on tribe.net.Thanks, Sandi. I totally agree on our reputation being based on our performance and behavior. Also ,breaking the stereotype of belly dancers is exactly what we did. People came up after and were totally surprised by our dance. It turned out to be a good venue and we went in with our code of conduct in mind (we always do but more so this time).br/br/The two local troupes that expressed their opinions are not ATS and they may have different experiences based on their type of dance. We are the only ATS troupe in this area and we do tend to get unsolicitated opinions more than we would like. Part of it could also be that we are getting more gigs than the other troupes in the area as well. And I think that is in part to the style of our dance.br/br/jms



    Originally posted by Rita on tribe.net.Actually,I am glad Joan just posted this question, as I have been mulling this over and I actually just pulled up this site to post the same...Joan and I are business/troupe partners and this has weighed heavily on our minds. br/br/What was upsetting was that we did vet the venue carefully before accepting the performance invitation and again after getting the negative feedback from the other belly dance group(s), and felt it was OK to proceed. Also, it did turn out to be a nice establishment with a quiet, respectful mid-week crowd that seemed to enjoy our show. We felt good about the whole thing afterwards, but have heard since that there was a lot of negative discussion from other local belly dance group(s)about us doing this gig. br/br/So, we did begin to feel that maybe we were on the wrong track and that maybe we should re-think whether we should perform at such a venue in the future. I have come to the conclusion that no matter what we do, and with what intentions, there are those out there who will criticize us anyway. So, we will try to continue to make decisions the best way we can with the information we have, and hope for the best.



    Originally posted by Wendy on tribe.net." I have come to the conclusion that no matter what we do, and with what intentions, there are those out there who will criticize us anyway. So, we will try to continue to make decisions the best way we can with the information we have, and hope for the best. "br/br/Exactly. You ladies need to do whats best for your group.

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