You probably noticed from your Insta that a new account has been teasing pole dancers about an upcoming London competition. That’s right: there’s a new pole dance competition on the block, and it’s going to be bloody sexy. This post will reveal who the organisers of the new Eden Pole Competition are – and they exclusively spill the tea on what to expect from their new comp so you better read on.
What’s Eden Pole Competition?
When I first saw posts advertising it, I noticed Eden Pole Competition had some unique points that attracted me to it and made it unlike any other comps I have seen in the UK – namely, its focus on dancing instead of tricks, and its inclusion of a showcase category. Because of these points, they had my interest, and rightly so: Eden has been created to fill a gap within the community for a competition that celebrates and embraces dance, movement and the artistry behind sexy pole.
Eden Pole Competition’s organisers say the new comp will make sure artistry is valued more than tricks, and they add: “The competition actively promotes diversity, inclusivity and creativity; we welcome people of all genders, races and religions,” and encourage those who enter to explore personal sexy, sensual, authentic movement.
Its organisers are comp veterans. They found from their personal competition experiences that the dance and artistry aspect of pole dancing is always secondary to tricks. Feedback from many students, professional performers and instructors, too, confirmed trick-heavy competitions are the main trend in the pole world, so much so that pole ‘dance’ is no longer prioritised. The team behind Eden Pole Competition decided to do something about this gap in the market, so that our showgirl cravings can finally be satisfied.
Eden Pole Competition’s Organisers
Not gonna lie, Exotic Generation UK (version one) scarred me for life and made me fear about new comps and giving space on this blog to organisers I don’t know and trust. This is why, when I first spotted Eden Pole Competition’s Instagram account I was like, nope. Maybe next year. I was intrigued and liked what they were saying, but I thought: let’s see what it’s like first.
Then I spoke to the founders and found out that they are some of the most experienced, well-respected pole dancers and performers I know. I immediately changed my mind, and I am going to send in my entry because I trust they will do a fantastic job – and so should you. So without further ado, here is the team behind Eden Pole Competition.
Lauren Elise is a pole dance instructor and performer based in London. She has been pole dancing for eight years and teaching for four, and has competed in many UK and international competitions. She has organised and been involved in several pole shows and events, and has experience in events and project management. Her style is mostly exotic but she takes inspiration from various other sources.
Dominique Stagg has been pole dancing for five years with a background in ballet and contemporary dance and has competed in a variety of UK pole and floorwork competitions. Her style has been described as elegant sensual flow. She has trained under Marlo Fisken’s flow movement instructor training and is currently teaching floor flow classes in London. Outside of dance, Dominique is a Marketing & Events Manager who has worked in the marketing and live events industry across the UK for 12 years.
Dominique and Lauren say:
We chose not to announce our involvement straight away as we wanted people to judge the competition initially on its own merits before making assumptions (whether they’re good or bad) about it based on who the organisers are. Our view is that a quality event should be able to have legs by itself without relying solely on the weight of the organisers behind it to make people take notice and want to be involved.
Additionally, we’d also like to make the point that this isn’t just “another exotic comp.” Exotic is just one of the five categories available in Eden. We wanted to create a diverse competition and that means diverse in people, in style and how a routine is judged.
As stated in our ethos, we have watched dance and artistry become secondary to tricks for a while now and we want to change that…Eden focuses on quality of movement rather than difficulty. The actual “dance” and performance aspect takes priority over how difficult tricks are.Dominique and Lauren – Eden Pole Competition founders
Eden Pole Competition’s venue is The Albany Theatre in south east London. It is an established theatre with experience in many different types of show including dance competitions, circus shows, burlesque and cabaret events. Exact dimensions of the stage are being confirmed but the founders are working towards roughly 4m high, 6m wide and 3m deep.
I knew that after EG this was going to be a sensitive issue so before you even panic, here’s info about the poles: the poles will be fixed 45mm attached to a truss provided by Pammie Cameron, a veteran competition organiser behind comps such as Floorplay Scotland, Miss and Mister Pole Essex and The Authentics Scotland.
Eden Pole Competition Categories
The competition will consist of five categories, with six finalists in each category.
- EXOTIC – Russian or otherwise, with a focus on technical elements, like effortless pointe work and refined, stylised movement, creative transitions and deceptively tricky flows;
- SHOWGIRL – Think pole classique, Aussie style, or burlesque inspired. Showgirl is sexy and entertaining, a perfect blend of tricks, flexibility and show, an exhibition of beautiful shapes and tantalising theatre;
- LOW FLOW – Basework only, competitors cannot do anything higher up the pole than they would reach for a chair spin. This is all about fluid dance and transitions around the bottom third of the pole. Style can be of your choice but only basework is allowed;
- OLD SCHOOL – Super sexy stripper style, OG pole, club vibes, inspired by the creators of our community to bring some nostalgia to the stage and show us your Old School flow. This category is to showcase your sensuality and engage the crowd;
- SHOWCASE – Not keen on competing but love to perform? Showcase allows you to dance the way you want to. There are no winners in this category, but judges will still give you constructive feedback. This category is for those who would like to perform but hate competing, and can be entered with any dance style.
If you’re wondering whether you should enter amateur or pro, Lauren and Dominique say strength or difficulty aren’t what Eden Pole Competition is about:
Because this competition is not about the difficulty we have chosen not to separate categories out by level, you could be a beginner with amazing musicality or a pro with great stage presence – we’re looking for style over strength.Eden Pole Competition Organisers
When Can You Enter?
Eden Pole Competition entries – which will cost £20 – will open on 1 November 2019 and close on 21 February 2020. All entrants will receive constructive feedback from our judges.
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I feel incredibly humbled that Dominique and Lauren – two dancers I really admire – have chosen my blog for the big Eden Pole Competition reveal. As part of our partnership for this post, they have waived the entry fee for me… but my entry will still be judged, so no worries, no unfair advantage there.