Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-06-09
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Male exotic dancers talk about their lives
by Blair Mishleau
2012-07-11

This article shared 9853 times since Wed Jul 11, 2012
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


The recently released movie Magic Mike has shed new light onto stripping, mostly showing off Channing Tatum's (and friend's) main assets and what life outside of the industry looks like.

Missing from the movie, though, is the gay-dancing scene: a massive market where gay and straight (and in-between) work side by side, often blurring identity lines and assumptions in the process. Add the fact that gay dancers can date, and there's a new level of complexity Magic Mike couldn't have dreamt of.

"Among 'tip dancers,' I'd say the majority are straight, or mostly straight," said Jared, a gay dancer who resides in Chicago. [Note: He requested his last name not be used.] "Among the dancers at large parties and circuit events, I'd say the majority are gay."

While you'll find different answers from different dancers throughout Chicago's nightlife and circuit parties across the country, one trend seems consistent: the lines between gay and straight become a bit murky in the dancing industry.

"I've known gay guys who said they were straight, and straight guys who said they were gay while working too," Jared said. "For the straight dancers, many of them are at least very comfortable with the idea of being gay even though they aren't, themselves. I'd say that many of them have experienced homosexual sex for themselves and decided they didn't prefer it [although they probably won't readily admit to it]."

Based on several interviews, the non-scientific proportion given for dancers hovers anywhere between 50 to 70 percent straight. At the end of the day you'll have to trust the dancer's word: Claiming to be straight or gay can get you further depending on the club you're working.

"Certain clubs, like the Lucky Horseshoe and a few others, are more acceptable for gay guys to work at," said JD, a former dancer of 12 years who is straight (and also requested his last name not be used). "But clubs like Cocktail are more of a straight-guy place [for dancing]."

Many straight dancers migrate to or start in the gay arena for a few reasons, including consistent work and higher pay.

"During the week I'd work mostly at gay clubs because they're easier to book. … Straight guys get more in tips. " JD said. "Weekends, I did bachelorette parties."

Where the dancing takes place makes a difference, though. According to Seth Fornea, who only works gay bars, gay dancers can make out better.

"Straight dancers do not do nearly as well as their gay counterparts," said Fornea, who's gay and resides in North Carolina. "Straight dancers are less willing to do risqué acts with the gay clientele and tend to become distracted by straight women entering the bar."

This can have the opposite effect at a bar that has straight female clientele who tag along with their gay friends:

"The only animosity I ever saw was that [gay dancers] didn't feel as comfortable dancing on girls," JD said.

"Straight women are great for a high-five hand slap, a couple of $1's and maybe some lip-synching together to a Britney song," Fornea said. "Beyond that, straight women are not good tippers to go-go boys."

Among other complexities the gay dancing industry has that the straight dancing sector doesn't involves dating co-workers.

For Jared and Fornea, who are in a relationship, what could be a huge difficulty has been a non-issue.

"For us, dancing is not awkward at all. It's something we do both together and apart and are fully supportive of each other," Fornea said.

Jared added, "I don't think it's difficult as long as the other person isn't the jealous type."

When it comes to entering the industry, advice varies but centers on balance.

"It's not about the money; it's about engaging clientele," Jared said. "Most people entering the bar want to talk with you. If you are fun, interesting and listen to them, you'll do a lot better and have more fun yourself. Stay away from really drunk or shady people and never do anything you don't want to do."

"You're either you're in it or you're not," JD said. "It's hard to work a full-time job then work nights like that. You've got to be a full-time dancer or you'll buy into the propositions and end up being an escort boy."


This article shared 9853 times since Wed Jul 11, 2012
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

DANCE Deeply Rooted named to INFLUENCERS Cohort
2021-07-24
Chicago's Deeply Rooted Dance Theater is one of five dance companies (and the only Midwestern one) named to the International Association of Blacks in Dance's (IABD's) INFLUENCERS Cohort for the 2021 COHI/MOVE program. The five ...


Gay News

LGBTQIA+ tavern to open in Uptown this fall
2021-07-14
2Bears Tavern Group—which owns and operates Andersonville's The SoFo Tap and Meeting House Tavern as well as Rogers Park's Jackhammer—is opening 2Bears Tavern Uptown in the former Nick's on Wilson space at 1140 W. Wilson Ave. ...


Gay News

Lightfoot announces 27 Neighborhood Opportunity Fund Grant finalists
2021-07-12
--From a press release - CHICAGO — Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot today announced 27 new Neighborhood Opportunity Fund (NOF) grant finalists. A Greater Grand Crossing shared kitchen, a Calumet Heights dance studio, and a Humboldt Park juice bar are among the ...


Gay News

Dance for Life to present 10 companies, world-premiere finale
2021-07-08
Chicago Dancers United (CDU), which supports the health and wellness of Chicago's professional dance community, announced an expanded lineup and program for the 30th anniversary of its annual fundraiser, Dance for Life, which takes place in ...


Gay News

AIDS ballet movie coming to Chicago on July 16
2021-07-07
The movie Can You Bring It: Bill T. Jones and D-Man in the Waters will open Friday, July 16, in virtual cinemas in Chicago at Gene Siskel Film Center and Music Box Theatre. "Can You Bring It"—co-directed by Rosalynde LeBlanc and ...


Gay News

Taste of Chicago To-Go" starts Wednesday
2021-07-07
--From a press release - Taste of Chicago To-Go" starts Wednesday with food vendors and food trucks; Chicago City Market vendors; Chicago SummerDance instructors; House City DJs; author Marisel Vera; Taste of Chicago favorites Eli's Cheesecake, Robinson's No. 1 Ribs and ...


Gay News

Billy Masters
2021-07-05
"like the song is literally about gay sex what y'all want me to do play the piano while baking a cake?"—Lil Nas X tweets a response to criticism of kissing one of his male dancers on the BET Awards. Call me ...


Gay News

Move your body! "House City" music series starts Sunday
2021-07-03
"House City" (kicking off July 4) is a new, 10-part series of free events popping up throughout the summer in the neighborhoods that helped create the House music genre over 35 years ago. DJ Jes, El ...


Gay News

DANCE Deeply Rooted to perform in person July 16-17
2021-07-01
Deeply Rooted Dance Theater's Summer Dance Intensive (SDI)—which takes place in a hybrid format combining in-person and virtual instruction this year—will culminate with in-person performances of new works Friday and ...


Gay News

VISIT Shedd Aquarium has many attractions, one distraction
2021-07-01
Nature lovers can rejoice. Shedd Aquarium (1200 S. DuSable Lake Shore Dr., in accordance with State of Illinois and City of Chicago guidelines, has fully reopened. (Guests are still ...


Gay News

Billy Masters
2021-06-28
"Ballet dancers and hairdressers and drag queens made it safe for football players to come out and not the other way around."—Dan Savage puts Carl Nassib's coming out into the context of those who came before ...


Gay News

ARC Music Festival to take place Sept. 4-5 in Union Park
2021-06-23
ARC Music Festival has announced the complete lineup for its Labor Day Weekend 2021 debut at Union Park, 1501 W. Randolph St. The dance event will feature acts such as Channel Tres, Derrick Carter, DJ Heather, ...


Gay News

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago's Season 43: A Virtual Homecoming June 24
2021-06-04
--From a press release - CHICAGO CHICAGO — Hubbard Street Dance Chicago's (HSDC) Season 43: A Virtual Homecoming will conclude with the world premiere of Greener Grass, a full-company work choreographed and directed by former HSDC company dancer Jie-Hung Connie S ...


Gay News

DANCE Joffrey Academy seeking submissions from minority applicants for competition
2021-06-01
The Joffrey Academy of Dance, Official School of The Joffrey Ballet, has announced a national call for ALAANA (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab and Native American) artists to submit applications for The Joffrey Academy's Twelfth Annual Winning ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ 'Red Hot' album, 'Drag Race,' 'L Word,' Qveen Herby, Lee Daniels
2021-05-30
The Red Hot organization, which raises funds to fight HIV/AIDS, announced Red Hot + Free—a mixtape of dance beats, electro grooves and global anthems, a press release noted. Out July 2 and helmed by producer-provocateur Bill ...


 



Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.